As September is already upon us, Visma Ski Classics pro teams are in the process of registering themselves and their skiers for the upcoming season. As always, there are some changes, a few surprises and new teams entering the battlefield.
One of the rookie teams is Team Ramudden from Sweden led by the Vasaloppet winner Lina Korsgren. The team puts its focus on young talent and spreading the good word about the sport and healthy living. Come the winter of 2019, you may see the team members walking around with some “Passion for Health” slogans printed on their clothes.
“I already had a three-year plan in my head when I started my own team last year,” Lina admits enthusiastically. “I knew back then that I’ll set my sights on longevity, and a new sponsor and a new young team around me fit my plan perfectly.”
The new sponsor’s healthy lifestyle suits her agenda, but the best reward comes from assisting young skiers in their pursuit for greatness.
“It’s truly inspiring to work with younger skiers and see how they strive for excellence. My goal with the team is to give them a platform where they can get international recognition and experience. I believe that the young generation is the one that will carry the torch for long distance skiing in the future. It won’t happen overnight and I urge my teammates to be patient.”
Putting Lina’s future perspective aside, her main goal in 2019 is to do well in Marcialonga and Vasaloppet. Her summer training proceeded extremely well and she is prepared to fight against the best ladies of the game. Her Vasaloppet victory has certainly given a new boost as it was a dream come true for her.
“To win the most prestigious race in the world means so much to me. First of all, I have proved to myself that I’m truly capable of being the best when it really matters. It has given me a great deal of self-confidence and strength to face any challenges that may lie ahead. There will be more great and strong women in the cup, and the new skating race is a great step forward as well. It suits me well!”
Engadin Skimarathon as the first skating race is certainly a major development in VSC, but what else would Lina like to see taking place in the long distance ski cup?
“I think the gender input should be equal. I mean that team points should be calculated from two best men and women from each race. Now, it’s two men and one woman bringing in the points. This move would activate more female skiers to participate and enhance the overall quality of the cup.”
It seems that Lina and her team are ready to rock the house this winter, and they will certainly pave the way for young skiers, especially for women, to join the fun and find their calling in this magical winter sport.
Written by: Teemu Virtanen
Photo: Magnus Östh