Petter Northug secure relay gold for Norway
On Feb. 27 Petter Northug sprinted away from Germany’s Axel Teichmann to give Norway the gold in the men’s cross-country relay, at the FIS Nordic Ski World Championships in Liberec, Czech Republic.
Norway finished the 4×10-kilometer relay in 1 hour, 41 minutes, 50.6 seconds. Germany was 2.6 seconds back to take silver and Finland finished third, 43.9 seconds behind.
Northug pulled away from the German in the last uphill section heading into the ski stadium and held a comfortable lead entering the home straight, raising his arms and waving to the crowd 30 meters before the finish line, reports Usatoday.com.
Northug was 15 seconds behind Teichmann heading into the final leg but caught up after two kilometers and then simply cruised behind the German until going past shortly before the finish. Northug is known as the best sprinter on the circuit, and Teichmann had no chance to keep up when the Norwegian made his move. Northug also won the 30K skiathlon pursuit.
“It was amazing to see Petter take the finish at the end,” said Eldar Rønning, who skied the first leg for Norway.
Odd-Bjørn Hjelmeset took the second leg, and said he told Northug to make sure he caught up to Teichmann quickly and then bide his time before the finish. He said: “I was a little bit nervous, but Petter is really good in the last 1K. I’m very happy to be Norwegian since Petter is Norwegian.”
The Finn tired on the last lap and was also passed by Tore Ruud Hofstad of Norway, who gave Northug the chance to catch Teichmann.