I do not know what is the secret I won today. The second part
of the competition was very difficult. I am good at distance
races and I like classical technique. This was my most favorite
race today. My tactics was to be building up the pace. I was
pushing very hard in the second lap. I wanted to go as fast
as possible in the last 5 km of the competition. When I heard
I could win, I got extra motivated and I was working even
harder. Before the World Championships we were training in
the high altitude in Bulgaria at 2.000 m. I'm quite well prepared
for the high altitude in Erzurum, nevertheless it is difficult
to compete here. There is a great team spirit in our squad.
Everybody is working very hard. Coaches, service as well as
athletes are trying their best. That is why Russians skiers
have collected so many medals here.
I am very happy about silver medal. I am not disappointed
I missed the gold medal. This is my first medal at the Junior/U23
World Ski Championships. I expected to by fighting with Mariya
(Guschina) for the podium. It was a tough fight with her from
the beginning of the competition. It feels great to be on
the podium with her. We share our big day together. The 5
km lap is very hard here in Erzurum but the track was prepared
in the perfect way
Ek Hagen (NOR)
I am very happy about the bronze medal. I was very tired at
the end of the race. It could have been fourth place but also
silver medal. I did not know about Emma Wiken's strong performance.
I knew about two Russian girls. When I crossed the finish
line I was very relieved I claimed the bronze medal. It was
very tight between me and Emma. I went wrong in the second
lap. If I had lost the medal because of that mistake I would
have been very disappointed. I never competed in such high
altitude. It has been tough but quite OK for me.
I cannot express how happy I am today when I defended the
title from Otepää. It was a tough competition. My
plan was to start carefully and then to build up the pace.
I had excellent skis. Our waxing team did a great job. I am
in great shape these days. I am happy I can be fighting for
medals both in sprints and in distance competitions. I will
have a rest now and will be getting ready for the Skiathlon
on Saturday. Last year I claimed silver medal in that competition
and I am hoping for a good result again.
I feel really good. That was fun to race today. Evgeniy Belov
was very fast today. It's my fifth time at the Junior/U23
Championships and I am happy for the podium. I was getting
the split times on the course but I was trying to stay focused
on my performance.
It was a very good race today. I am happy about my third place.
I had problems with my otitis in my left ear so I had to be
on antibiotics. Fortunately I did not need my ear for racing.
It was very hard to be competing in the high altitude. I wanted
to go slowly at the beginning but then I was in the lead after
5.0 km. I was probably too fast in early stages of the race
but I came to the finish for bronze and I am happy for that.
I hope I will have a good race on Saturday. The German team
had a good day with strong performance. I hope Jochen Behle
is happy with us.