Changchun, China 2008.12.31
Johan Edin, competing for Kovlands SK outside of the Swedish City Sundsvall left a strong message when Tour de Ski Chinas 3rd stage was held on the morning of New Years Eve in Changchun. –This was great! I really value this victory, said Johan after passing the finish line and all interviews for Chinese TV.
After two days of competitions in Inner Mongolia, Tour de Ski China moved on to Changchun, 800 km north of Beijing. Skiers had a long day of travelling behind
them when standing on the finish line on the morning of the 31st.
-Sure it was a long trip, but I tried to convince myself that it was the same for everyone, then I just had to pull myself together, says Johan who was extremely strong the whole day. He gave an impressing performance in all moments of the competition-from the qualifications, through quarter and Semi-all the way to the final. Johan had a single tactic in the final:
-“I gave everything to be the fastest one in the start and the first one going in to the first curve, the risk of collisions where quite big”. Johans tactics paid out. He took the lead right away with the main contesters Anders Högberg and Erik Övsthus Bakkefjord skiing behind him together. After that there was no one who could threaten Johan who really enjoys his time in China.
– “Last year i heard from a friend that it was nice to compete in this country, that’s why I went here and I have to say that after three races, it really precedes my expectations. The best thing is all Chinese with their friendly cheering”.
Anders Högberg who started the Tour with two victories in Inner Mongolia was very tired after the tough trip to Changchun.
-“The clash in the final didn’t matter that much, I didn’t have a chance to win today anyway. Now I am going to rest before the Chinese Vasaloppet on Friday”.
In the women’s sprint, Man Dandan, China, won a dramatic final just ahead of Finland’s Lotta Puttonen. Tour De Ski China continues on Friday with the Vasaloppet China that usually gathers a big start field.
Changchun, China :Tour De Ski China, Sprint-Stage 3:
Men: 1) Johan Edin, Sweden 2) Sun Qinghai, China, 3) Fredrik Persson, Sweden, 4) Anders Högberg, Sweden, 5) Erik Övsthus Bakkejord, Norway, 6) Asgeir Årdal Mandelid, Norway
Damer: 1) Man Dandan, Norway, 2) Lotta Puttonen, Finland, 3) Song Bo, China, 4) Tiril Schölberg, Norway, 5) Li Hongxue, China, 6) Sandra Gredig, Switzerland, 7) E Yingcui, China, 8) Rebecka Sundin, Sweden