In pursuit of the Norwegians; the duel of the leading ladies

Saturday in Pokljuka is reserved for pursuit races. The ladies will hit the track at 11:30 a.m., and the men at 2:45 p.m. In the women’s competition, the leaders of the World Cup will compete for victory; in the men’s competition, the world will be chasing the Norwegians.


In the women’s competition, Sweden’s Elvira Oeberg, France’s Julia Simon, and Italian champion Dorothea Wierer will be the first to start. The French and the Swede will not only fight for first place in the race, but they are also the leading competitors in the World Cup. Julia Simon has a 61-point advantage.


However, many competitors from the back also have good chances. After all, 16 of them finished Thursday’s sprint less than a minute behind the winner. Completing the first sixteen is the Norwegian biathlete Marte Olsbu Roeiseland, who, due to health problems, returned to international competitions not earlier than here in Pokljuka. It is also true that the leading competitors have “an advantage of almost a penalty loop”, but the fight for the lowest podium position is still open.


Among those who will chase the leaders, we can find many dangerous and fast competitors. Unfortunately, there are no Slovenians among them, as they were not in the top 60 on Thursday, and thus failed to qualify for the pursuit.


In the men’s competition, Johannes Thingnes Boe is aiming for the 100th podium in his career. So far, he has collected 99 of them. But the opponents will not only be chasing the leading competitor in the Cup. Sprint was completely dominated by the Norwegians. Second place was won by the older of the Boe brothers, Tarjei, third was Sturla Holm Laegreid, the only one who threatens Boe in the World Cup overall standings.


The road to victory will be difficult for non-Norwegian competitors. German Benedikt Doll in fourth and Czech Michal Krčmar in fifth place are already 1:03 minutes behind Boe.


Among the Slovenians, Jakov Fak, 12th in the sprint, has a good starting position. He is less than half a minute behind the fourth place. “I hope I will be better on skis than in sprint. I felt my legs too much in the last lap. The starting position is good,” Fak confirmed his ambitions.


Miha Dovžan will hit the track in 22nd place, Anton Vidmar in 47th place, and Alex Cisar in 57th place.