Alexey Poltoranin (KAZ)
Justyna Kowalczyk (POL)
Finish
Justyna Kowalczyk (POL), Therese Johaug (NOR, Kristin Steira (NOR), Heidi Weng (NOR)
Justyna Kowalczyk (POL)
Krista Lähteenmäki (FIN), Therese Johaug (NOR) (l-r)
Petter Northug (NOR)

JUSTYNA KOWALCZYK AND ALEXEY POLTORANIN WIN CLASSICAL MASS START

05.01.2013
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As supposed Justyna Kowalczyk (POL, Fischer skis and boots) stormed to victory in 10k classical mass start. Norwegian skier Therese Johaug (NOR, Fischer) lost many further seconds in Overall ranking. Alexey Poltoranin (KAZ, Fischer skis and boots) secured victory in 15k classical mass start at sixth stage of Tour de Ski ahead of Lenny Valjas (CAN, Fischer skis and boots) and Alex Harvey (CAN, Fischer).
High pace of the Polish
Misgivings of Therese Johaug proved true: Justyna Kowalczyk set a very high pace in mass start in her favourite technique so nobody was able to follow her. Already after 1.9 kilometres at the first bonus sprint the main group was splitted. At the stadium passage after five kilometres Kowalczyk got down to business and created a gap against her direct chasers Therese Johaug and Kristin Stoermer Steira (NOR). Therese Johaug didn't have a good day and during the last two kilometres she lost the contact to her compatriot. Justyna Kowalczyk won the race with a 33 seconds advantage, Therese Johaug finished only fourth, 41 seconds back. Sixth went to surprisingly strong young Swede Emma Wikén. Finns Kerttu Niskanen (FIN, Fischer skis and boots) and Riitta Liisa Roponen (FIN; Fischer skis and boots) and Swede Anna Haag (SWE, Fischer skis and boots) completed top ten. Before last stage Kowalczyk is more than two minutes ahead of Johaug. "My skis were very good. As planned before I increased the speed after the first lap. Tomorrow I have to ski my own race", Kowalczyk said.

Race of surprises
During the race not so many people would have expected these three athletes on podium: Team Russia with Alexander Legkov (RUS) and Maxim Vylegzhanin (RUS, Fischer) controlled the race and kept the pace high. Poltoranin stayed in the middle of the pack and didn't seem to be so fresh today but in the last lap he caught up position by position already at the bonus sprint. The Canadians weren't in the top positions, too. They saved energies for the final sprint and Lenny Valjas and Alex Harvey came in second and third. Grand old man Giorgio di Centa (ITA, Fischer) finished fourth, fifth went to Tobias Angerer (GER, Fischer skis and boots) after jury decision against Legkov followed by Johan Olsson (SWE, Fischer). Today's surprise in the leading group became Austrian Johannes Dürr (AUT, Fischer) who sensational stayed in contact to the top group and finished eighth. Dietmar Nöckler (ITA, Fischer skis and boots) came in tenth.
    
Changes in Overall rankings
After mass start there are a few changes in Overall rankings. The main reason is Petter Northug (NOR, Fischer) who had a lot of problems very early afting finishing first in the first bonus sprint after 1.9 kilometres. After five kilometres he was ranked only 31st, but only five seconds back. Two kilometres later he was already 22 seconds behind at second bonus sprint but compared to Valjas and di Centa who were shortly behind him he wasn't able to close the gap. Although his compatriot Finn Haagen Krogh (NOR, Fischer) helped him for a while he lost the contact and important seconds. After 15 kilometres he became only 28th, round about 30 seconds behind. Although Dario Cologna (SUI, Fischer skis and boots) lost a few seconds and came in eleventh, Marcus Hellner (SWE, Fischer) finished 14th ahead of Lukas Bauer (CZE, Fischer) and Maxim Vylegzhanin (RUS, Fischer) was ranked 18th. In Overall ranking Dario Cologna is now in the lead six seconds ahead of Alexander Legkov. Petter Northug is further five seconds behind, Maxim Vylegzhanin is in fourth position, 16 seconds back.


10k C mass start Women, Val di Fiemme (ITA):
1. Justyna Kowalczyk
POL 00.28.12,90
2. Kristin Störmer Steira
NOR 00.28.46,10
3. Krista Lähteenmäki
FIN 00.28.51,90
4. Therese Johaug
NOR 00.28.54,00
5. Aino Kaisa Saarinen
FIN 00.29.14,50
6. Emma Wiken
SWE 00.29.14,80
7. Heidi Weng
NOR 00.29.15,90
8. Kerttu Niskanen
FIN 00.29.16,40
9. Riitta Roponen
FIN 00.29.16,60
10. Anna Haag
SWE 00.29.17,10
11. Kikkan Randall
USA 00.29.17,90
12. Astrid Jacobsen
NOR 00.29.24,40
13. Anne Kyllönen
FIN 00.29.25,90
14. Katrin Zeller
GER 00.29.30,20
15. Denise Herrmann
GER 00.29.32,60
15k C mass start Men, Val di Fiemme (ITA):
1. Alexey Poltoranin
KAZ 39:01.5
2. Len Valjas
CAN 39:01.6
3. Alex Harvey
CAN 39:01.9
4. Giorgio Di Centa
ITA 39:02.2
5. Tobias Angerer
GER 39:02.4
6. Johan Olsson
SWE 39:04.3
7. Ivan Babikov
CAN 39:09.0
8. Johannes Duerr
AUT 39:09.7
9. Alexander Bessmertnykh
RUS 39:10.3
10. Dietmar Noeckler
ITA 39:11.1
11. Dario Cologna
SUI 39:12.2
12. Calle Halfvarsson
SWE 39:14.4
13. Andrey Larkov
RUS 39:14.5
14. Marcus Hellner
SWE 39:15.1
15. Lukas Bauer
CZE 39:15.5