It was French victory on the men’s side on the opening day of Toppdrettsvekka 2012 as Jean-Marc Gaillard won the first competition over 24 km free on roller skis. Simen Oestensen and Martin Johnsrud Sundby represented home colors on the podium.
Gaillard won the mass start competition with a comfortable lead of four seconds on the runners-up. Strong Brit Andrew Musgrave claimed fourth place and the winner of Toppidrettsvekka from 2008 to 2010 Oeystein Pettersen finished fifth.
“The plan was to be in top 10, but I finished in fifth place so I am ahead of the plan,” Pettersen said. Petter Northug was forced to sit out the opening competition due to light cold.
Marit Bjoergen started the sports week in Aure/Kristiansund in a great style as she clearly dominated the ladies’ 24 km mass start free with a 32-second margin on the runner up Heidi Weng. Slovenia’s Katja Visnar took third place more than three minutes behind the winner.
“It was fun to compete and win here. I had a good competition and there were many people cheering on us along the course,” Bjoergen said. The FIS Cross-Country World Cup winner 2011/12 will be at the start of all the five competitions of the Sports Week in Aure/Kristiansund. “There are good competitions in Aure/Kristiansund. We have presented Cross-Country skiing in a great way,” she added.
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