Sweden’s Anders Hoegberg has claimed the second stage of the 2014 China Tour de Ski and his fourth Vasaloppet China title in Changchun’s Jingyuetan today. The 38-year-old veteran was clearly fastest during the 45km long classic style race and arrived at the finish solo. The women’s race was again won by a domestic skier: Ma Qinghua outpaced yesterday’s winner Astrid Bruland.
Fair weather and a relatively moderate temperature of minus 10 was a major contrast to last year’s ice race. On the first of three laps, Hoegberg remained calm in the leading group and then began to increase the pace gradually. Adam Steen managed to keep Hoegberg at least in sight with a 33″ deficit at the finish. The podium was completed by Bob Niemi-Impola, making it an all-Sweden podium this year.
China’s Ma Qinghua improved on her 4th place from last year to grab a great win over Norway’s Astrid Bruland in a hotly contested race. Bruland remains in the overall lead of China Tour de Ski, but finds in Ma Qinghua her toughest opponent to date. Third place today went to last year’s Vasaloppet China champion Chen Shuang.