Today the new roller ski race Båstad-Mölle took place in the south of Sweden.
The 57 km-long Challengers event saw Stian Hoelgaard, Team Curira and Lina Korsgren, Team Ramudden as winners.
Båstad-Mölle attracted some strong athletes to this new Visma Ski Classics Challengers race. However, the fight for victory in the men's class stood between Team Curira's new acquisition, Stian Hoelgaard and Alfred Buskqvist, a strong Swedish sprinter and roller skier who represented his club, IK Stern, from Gothenburg.
Hot weather, a tough racecourse and resistance 3 on the wheels took their toll on the athletes and the second part of the race was just about Hoelgaard and Buskqvist. The margin to third place, Gabriel Thorn, Team Curira's new acquisition, ended up being more than five minutes.
Hoelgaard sprinted to victory, his first in a Visma Ski Classics or a Visma Ski Classics Challengers event, 0,7 seconds ahead of Buskqvist.
"It was a very nice course with a tough climb at the beginning and the end. It was not so steep at the end but long and tough," says Hoelgaard
What was it like to compete after a spring with some easier training?
"It was brutal. A tough start with almost 60 km on roller skis, but it's good to just get started."
Buskqvist and Hoelgaard.
The women started five minutes behind the men's field and Ida Dahl pushed hard right from the start.
"When Ida started so strong, I thought that this could be a long day if I had to race myself for 57 kilometers but I could catch up and then we helped each other. It was fun to catch up with some guys. You get motivated by it, says Korsgren.
"I think it was good that we started behind and got our own race from the beginning. Then, as Lina says, it's fun when you see people on the course and can chase them," says Dahl.
In the end, Korsgren was the strongest and won by eleven seconds ahead of Dahl.
Korsgren and Dahl.
As with each Challengers event, Pro Team registered athletes were able to collect points for the Ski Classics Champion and Youth competitions in respective gender. This means that Stian Hoelgaard and Lina Korsgren have already collected the maximum amount of 50 points at a Challengers event which counts to their overall standing for Visma Ski Classics Season XII.
All participants in Båstad-Mölle receive points for their SC ranking which they can check by logging in for free to MyPages.
Results of Båstad-Mölle can be found on vismaskiclassics.com.
The next Visma Ski Classics Challengers event, Totenrullen, takes place in Raufoss Norway in two weeks on Saturday, 19th June 2021. See a full list of Challengers events with already confirmed dates for the season 2021/22 at vismaskiclassics.com/events.