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Falla and Kriukov won the RPS 2016

Kriukov, the winner.
Photo: Olov Bylund

Tisdag 16 feb 2016, kl 20

It was a dramatic conclusion to the races around the Royal Palace where the Norwegian Maiken Caspersen Falla took a clear victory on the women"s side after she"d been going fast all the way from the start and the Russian Nikita Kriukov got to stand highest on the podium in the men"s class after an impressive last run at the finish.

The organizers have worked hard to secure enough snow in a warm Stockholm, and now that it was finally time, the atmosphere was great. A large number of spectators filled† the stands and along the entire course. Several Swedish flags fluttered and there was large audience support for both the Swedish and Norwegian skiers.

The competition started at 12.15 with the prologue, where Sweden had 16 women and 16 men participating. The qualification was a Swedish success on the women"s side, where eight skiers made it through to the finals.

In the ladies final we had one Russian, two Norwegians and three Swedes on the starting line. It was some tough skiing all the way, and in the long uphill towards the goal Stina Nilsson was left behind by Falla and Ostberg. The Swedish team filed a protest against rough skiing from the Norwegians, but it was rejected. Finally, there were Swedish in third, fourth and fifth place.

1. Maiken Caspersen Falla, NOR
2. Ingvild flugstad Ýstberg, NOR
3. Stina Nilsson, SWE
4. Hanna Falk, SWE
5. Jennie ÷berg, ENG
6. Evgenia Shapovalova, RUS

As usual it was a lot of talk before the start about whether the athletes would go with wax or not, and despite loose snow conditions many of the athletes on the men"s side successfully double poled through the course without grip wax.

On the men"s side Oskar Svensson was the only Swede who made it from the prologue. He won his quarterfinal but was eliminated in a tough semi-final.
When it was time for the men"s final 4 Norwegians were lined up on the starting line along with a Frenchman and a Russian. For a long time it looked like it would be Norwegian in the first three places, but on the long home stretch the Russian Kriukov made a fantastic finish and took a clear victory.

1. Nikita Kriukov, RUS
2. Ola Vigen Hattestad, NOR
3. Petter Northug, NOR
4. Finn Haagen Krogh, NOR
5. Baptiste Gros, FRA
6. Sondre Turvold Fossli, NOR

Uppdaterad onsdag 18 jan 2017, kl 10
av Ulf Rask

Fler bilder

Falla number one.
Photo: Olov Bylund