Ski orienteering championship race over the middle distance took place on Saturday. In the men’s class it was again Lars Moholdt who won the competition as in previous year in Obertilliach. The best woman was Tove Alexandersson, who got her second gold medal here. The silver got Mariya Kechkina (RUS) and Kirill Veselov (RUS), and bronze medal was won by Alena Trapeznikova (RUS) and Andrey Grigoriev (RUS).
Lars Moholdt (Norway): It was a tricky race today with a lot of demanding reaches; I think it is not possible to make a perfect race in this course as it is so demanding. There is not so much snow and you have to go quite far around and it is difficult to consider what is shortest way. I heard about many athletes disqualifications today as they went through the lake, I also saw that option but it is seen from the map that it is a forbidden zone so I spend half of second and then took another route.
Eduard Khrennikov (Russia): The race was quite good except having one mistake: I had not seen a fence and while cutting I saw it I could not reacting quickly what is it and lost may be 30 seconds there. That was my big mistake and others parts of race were good. But there was one thing on the race, there was a good variant through the lake which save you 1 minute. We asked before the start whether it is allowed to ski there but there was no clear answer. But at the final point there was a disqualification for this route chosen by some athletes, so this part of race also brings some psychological doubts to me. In comparison with Long-distance today you work on your own and there is no kids skiing hither and thither through the forest.
Tove Alexandersson (Sweden): It was a good race. But I had a mistake: I went to number 15 instead of control point 7, so I lost may be one minute there. Also there were tricky tracks and I am not sure as I have chosen really good routes. Of course I had wish it was more snow but overall it is ok, it was technically good.
Alena Trapeznikova (Russia): There was a difficult configuration of the race, and there were very high-speed tracks, where you have to watch out and be always prepared for abrupt turning. And in the last part of race I had a mistake: I was trying to avoid bumping with another participant, who skis towards me, and in this case turn to the wrong route. I realized this mistake too late. Also there is lack of snow in the forest, but lots of stones – I feel really sorry for my ski. But anyway organizers do their best and every athlete is in the same conditions.
Maria Kechkina (Russia): Today it was a very fast race because there were lots of tracks and many tricky routes, and you always had to be very careful not to miss the track you need. Everybody have very high speed and any mistakes bring you much time. Today I did not use cuttings as at first day I did not succeed in them, but even on the ski tracks there are little stumps that make your skiing dangerous.
Evelina Wickbom (Sweden): I did not do the race good, I have made many mistakes and wrong route choices. I think I was too stressed into orienteering today.
Even Toomas (Estonia): The race was bad. We had two loops, the first one was on the same area as sprint was and it was ok. The second loop was downthere, I was tired and Latvian athlete, who has really good speed, caught me and we have been skiing may be 6 control points before the finish. So today for me the race was physically difficult, as I have not trained that much.
Misa Tuomala (Finland): It was ok. I had may be some wrong route choices, but overall it is ok. Today it was quite technical race, but of course in some parts you ski as fast as you can. In comparison with long distance it was a little bit better in orienteering, I think, but physically I am a bit tired today.
Erik Blomgren (Sweden): I did not have my best physically. But it was only orienteering the whole way and I am pretty satisfied. I do not whether I made some mistakes in choosing wrong rotes, it should be seen by GPS. Today’s condition of the tracks is much better than on a long distance and I think that organizers do really good job as there is not so much snow, but tracks are quite satisfying.
Ville Petteri Saarela (Finland): It was a good race with some mistakes, actually the last control was taken by wrong route. And the conditions of tracks today are really better.