Tour de Ski Stage 3: Bellingham on the Up!

Phil Bellingham Australian cross country skiing athlete Phillip Bellingham poses wearing the opening ceremony uniform during the Australian Olympic Team Uniform launch ahead of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics at the Main Press Center (MPC) at the Olympic Park on February 5, 2014 in Sochi, Russia.

Phil Bellingham recorded his highest finish of the Tour de Ski on Day Three in Val Mustair, Switzerland. This third stage was the first sprint event in this year’s Tour and the first Swiss stage.

Phil finished in 58st place out of a field of 83 just over thirteen seconds behind the faster qualifier Petter Northug Jr. of Norway. Phil was only four seconds outside being in the top 30 and racing finals, an aim he has held for some time. Being so close to making the top 30 will frustrate Phil however this is a good results and if he can consistently ski this fast it is only a matter of time before we sees things fall his way and we have an Australian in the finals of a World Cup for the first time ever.

Phil will now leave the Tour de Ski and return to Sweden to prepare for the Scandinavian Cup event this weekend in Falun.

For those just tuning in the Tour de Ski is a series of World Cups held on consecutive days similar to the format of multistage cycling events. To qualify to race World Cup you have to meet an international standard that is stricter then World Championships and the Olympics making the fields tight and elite. There is also a country quoter that limits how many athletes can race from each country. Phil’s result of 58th places him in front of four athletes from Germany, two from the United States and athletes from Sweden, France, Austria, Estonia, Russia and Canada which shows the elite level he is now skiing at.

On a side note, Phil has been supported during the Tour de Ski by Team Great Britain who had a fantastic day with two athletes finishing in the top 30. Both Andrew Musgrave and Andrew Young qualified 16th and 17th respectively in qualifying. What was then impressive was the way Andrew Young in particular skied his quarter final to move up to 15th in the final standing. Andrew Musgrave finished in 18th after the finals and is currently sitting in 24th in the overall standing in the Tour de Ski. I know Phil will be full of praise for the support provided by the Brits and would have been happy to see and inspired by the success they achieved at the top level.

Results

1. PELLEGRINO Federico ITA 3:13.65
2. NORTHUG Petter Jr. NOR +0.18
3. SUNDBY Martin Johnsrud NOR +0.19
4. BELOV Evgeniy RUS +2.33
5. CHERNOUSOV Ilia RUS +6.07

58. Phillip Bellingham AUS +13.3

 

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