Alexander Bolshunov, 4 medals in the Peyong Chang Olympic Games 2018 took an impressive victory on an exceptional edition of Blink Classics. Another young Russian, Sergey Ardashev, got the second place ahead of the Norwegians and the internationals skiers! In the women race, a long fight between Kari Vikhagen Gjeitnes (Team Ragde Eiendom) and Astrid Øyre Slind (Team Koteng) who turned in the advantage of Kari.
Blink Classics 2018 has been a great success! Everything was united: the world best skiers, an impressive crowd all along the track, the sun and warm conditions and an intense spectacle! From the start in Ålgård, Martin Sundby imposed a fast pace. On the first Guide WCT sprints many athletes fought to take the prize money and precious points for the Sprint Ranking. Magnus Bøe, who competed for South Korea during the Olympics this winter, but now goes for a Norwegian team, took the two first sprints.
It was still a big peloton that arrived for the third sprint and second Guide WCT Sprint, Simen Hegstad Krüger, second of the 2017 edition, crossed the line in first position. At the bottom of the long uphill, a big pack attacked the biggest difficulty of the race. But it would not last for long, Holund imposed an heavy pace and the peloton started to loose elements. It is under the impulsion of Niskanen that a small group detached. Niskanen will be eventually rewarded of the prize of Guide WCT Athlete of the Day for his offensive behaviour.
Then a small group gathered down to Søredalen and held a good pace all the way down to Sandnes Arena. Eventually, several small groups worked hard to catch the head group, and at 4 kilometers to the finish a larger field gathered. Suddenly the Russians appeared and the unknown Ardashev together with the famous Bolshunov moved in front of the rest of the field . Bolshunov held an supersonic pace, breaking away before the last down hill to plunge on the Sandnes – Blik Festival arena.
Bolshunov kept his pole position and won on his first attempt the Blink Classics 2018! He was followed by Ardashev, second and the Guide WCT Champion leader, Anders Mølmen Høst, sprinted for the third place ahead of the leader group with, among others, Gjerdalen, Røthe, Sundby, Holund and Krüger.
The women’s race was also exciting, and the girls kept up for a long time together with the men, but had to let go around halfway. Kari Vikhagen Gjeitnes eventually walked away from Astrid Øyre Slind who took the second place, after a having taken the victory on the 2017 edition. Jystina Kowalczik completed the podium.
Guide World Classic Tour standings after Blink Classics – Second Stage.
Anders Mølmen Høst – Team Serneke strengthen is leading position after excellent 3rd place confirming his great shape on this summer 2018. Tor Gjerdalen – Team Ragde Eiendom is second, Morten Eiden Pedersen – Team BN Bank complete the podium.
Kari Vikhagen Gjeitnes reduce the gap with Astrid Øyre Slind which will announce a great fight on the next stage Alliansloppet.
Check out here the full standings after Blink Classics:
Next stage Alliansloppet – 25th August 2018 Trollhättan, Sweden