Mitsubishi Elecric World Classic Tour began today with Lysebotn Opp Double Poling, first stage of BLINK 23, in the majestic Lysefjord (Norway).
The impressive 7,5 km uphill with its 27 hairpin turns and an 10 % average steepness took the athletes from the sea level up to 600 meters high, climbed with nothing more than the strength of the arms (roller skis without anti-reverse rachets were used).
Andrew Musgrave above the pack
The skier from Team Aker Dahlie started stong and placed a decisive attack about 3 km from the finish, dropping Erik Augdal from Team Eksjöhus and Iivo Niskanen, the Finnish World Champion.
It was his third win on Lysebotn Opp Double Poling.
He had the honor to put on the Champion bib, that he will wear tomorrow too.
Astrid Øyre Slind touching the sky
In the women category, Astrid Øyre Slind (Team Aker Dahlie) showed herself as the strongest from the beginning and she increase the pace until the top, raising her hands for the third time in Lysebotn Opp Double Poling’s story.
Anniken Gjerde Alnes from Team Ragde Charge and Emilie Fleten from Team Ramudden are completing the podium.
Tomorrow is dedicated to long distance with BLINK Classic in Ålgård, Norway. The tough 13 km lap will have to be skied 4 time, for a total distance of 54 km.
The first sprint points of the season will be awarded. Let’s the battle for the green jersey begin!
The race can be watched LIVE on NRK and xc-ski.de from 18:45.
Picture: Arild Aarnes