DAVOS WORLD CUP 2.0 – Bottomley 52nd, Bellingham 62nd, Bursill 76th

Before I start this report I have been instructed by the athletes to give a huge thank-you to Fabian Mauz who has volunteered his time and expertise to provide waxing and managerial support to the World Cup team over the last two weeks. Being unsupported whilst racing World Cup is a challenge for even the most experience campaigner and thus everyone is extremely grateful for the help and support Fabian has provided.

The World Cup circuit remained in Davos for a second weekend in a row and consisted of a 10/15km skate and a skate sprint. Australia had three athletes, Esther Bottomley, Phillip Bellingham and Jackson Bursill race the sprint event. The course and conditions were very similar to the Davos World Cup 1.0 held last weekend.

Esther Bottomley after winning the 2013 national sprint race, her 15th national sprint title.

Esther Bottomley achieved her best result so far this season by finishing in 52nd place, 16 seconds or 10% behind winner Marit Bjoergen of Norway. Esther was three second or 2% closer to the winner this weekend compared to last weekend. The result shows she is improving week to week and on the way to back to her previous best.

Jackson Bursill showed remarkable improvement from last weekend racing 5 seconds or 4% faster. The result put Jackson in 76th place 18 seconds behind the winner or 13% back. Jackson’s aim for this weekend was to finish within 15% of the winner which is a great achievement for the 21 year old from Canberra.

 

2014_AUS_Sprint_F_Bursill_Profile

Phill Bellingham’s results was arguably the best of the Australians however probably the most unsatisfying as it showed no improvement from last weekend. Phil said he felt fantastic during the race and thought he was on track to post a really good result however upon crossing the line was disappointed to see that he was still 8 seconds or 6% behind the winner. This is a result that most Australian could retire on but for Phil who is desperate to crack into the top 30 on World Cup he found it somewhat frustrating.

Pride: Australian cross country skier Phil Bellingham addresses the media. Photo: Getty Images

Qualifying for and racing on World Cup is a huge achievement for all these athletes. World Cups racing involves the best of the best of the best of the nordic skiing world. These last three weeks including Lillehammer and the two weekends in Davos have seen four Australian compete at this highest level. They are Callum Watson, Phillip Bellingham, Esther Bottomley and Jackson Bursill. All four have consistently raced their best and have done Australia proud.

This concludes the first period of World Cup racing for Australia. Phil Bellingham is planning to race the Tour de Ski over the Christmas/New Year period whilst the rest of the team will not race World Cup again until mid-February.

Callum Watson and Phil Bellingham following the Men's Team Sprint. © Olympics.com.au

Results – Men’s Qualifying

1. Sondre Fossli, NOR, 2:17.43

61. Phil Bellignham, AUS, 2:25.93

76. Jackson Bursill, AUS, 2::35.53

77 starters

Results – Men’s Final

1. Federico Pellegrino, ITA

2. Alexey Putukhov, RUS

3. Finn Hagen Krogh, NOR

Results – Women’s Qualifying

1. Marit Bjoergen, NOR, 2:37.59

52. Esther Bottomley, AUS, 2:53.68

60 starters

Results – Women’s Final

1. Marit Bjoergen, NOR

2. Stina Nilsson, SWE

3. Ingvild Flugstad Oestberg, NOR

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