Latvian skiing centre of Preikuli hosted the final stage of the roller skiing Baltic Cup. The hosting nation dominated the competitions and grabbed five from six podium places in men’s and ladies’ elite groups. Arvis Liepnis powered to win in 41,6km free technique interval start competition, as Inga Dauskane was the quickest lady in 20,8km.
The third and last stage of the Baltic cup was carried out also as Latvian nationals championship and the last event of popular “Rollerttour” series. 81 roller skiers from three Baltic countries gathered to take part in the competitions and set a new participation record not only in this season but also in last two years. Despite the rain before the competition and slippery conditions, athletes could produce faster times than last year. Latvian Arvis Liepins laid down faster times in the first 2,6 km laps, increased his lead and won the last stage of Baltic cup third year in a row. In 01:29:22,02 he beat the runner up Daumants Lusa by four and a half minutes. Another Latvian Ivo Caune finished in third place. Second consecutive podium results secured Caune the overall victory in Baltic Cup.
On the ladies side battle for win was tighter, however, also there was no doubt about winner. Latvian Inga Daushkane set the time 55:03,15, and beat compatriot and second place winner Anda Muizhniece by 1:37 sec. Kristina Kazlauskaite came in third place and secured the overall victory in the Cup, beating Latvian Natalija Kovalova just by 5 points. Kazlauskaite earned the first overall victory for a Lithuanian skier since Vytautas Strolias’ achievement last season.
Contributed by Ivars Bacis