Falun 2015 – 30km & 50km Mass Starts

Falun 2015 Race Reports # 8 and #9 – Women 30km and Men 50km Mass Start Classic

Originally three Australians were entered for the 30km Classic but only Casey Wright made it to the start line. Jessica Yeaton decided to opt to rest for the upcoming World Cups in Lahti, then just when it seemed the gastro days were over Aimee Watson became the latest athlete to succumb. Casey made an incredible effort to finish her first 30km in tough conditions in 47th place out of 49 starters. The unstoppable winner Therese Johaug from Norway skied away from the front of the pack after just 7km, winning in the end by 52 seconds after leading at one point by 1:15.


The final day of competition in Falun and Callum Watson was the sole Australian starter in the 50km Classic after Paul Kovacs also had some stomach problems. Unfortunately Callum’s incredible story back from a punctured lung last August didn’t finish with a fairy tale ending. After struggling with stomach cramps in the first lap he withdrew early in the second lap. This was the end of Callum’s racing season now and he’ll return to Australia in the coming week. It was very tough 50km in soft and slow conditions, won in the end by Petter Northug from Norway with an amazing final 500m (even worth looking back for the 500m before that).

That’s it now for the post-Falun wrap-up. Apologies again for the delay – packing up, travel and sleep got in the way. Many of the athletes from Falun are now already back in Australia, but three remain in Europe. Phillip Bellingham and Jessica Yeaton arrived in Finland last night for the Lahti World Cup this weekend, while Esther Bottomley is set to race the Vasaloppet on Sunday.


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