Duel of Bolshunov and Terentyev

The season for Russian skiers in the new year continued with the sixth stage of the Russian Cup.

In men, of course, everyone was waiting for the continuation of the duel between Alexander Bolshunov and Sergey Ustyugov, however, the next "battle of the titans" in the sprint was postponed to a later date due to the training plan of the latter.

As Markus Kramer, who works with the athlete, explained, he is currently preparing for important starts in February and March.

“Sergey now needs more classes and fewer competitions,” a German TASS specialist quotes.

Most likely, this explains Ustyugov's not the most successful performance in the 15 km freestyle cut-off - the only race in which he took part in Syktyvkar.

The Olympic champion took only 17th place, almost a minute and a half behind the winner.

Unlike Sergei, his national team partner Alexander Bolshunov prefers to get in shape during the competition, so he showed up in Syktyvkar for all distances.

According to the athlete, he arrived at the start not in optimal condition: it took time to recover from a fall at the previous stage in Krasnogorsk.

“I didn’t train for five days, the back surface hurt.

Before Syktyvkar, the week was with light training.

Now I don’t feel well, but I’m surprised that it got better during the race, ”explained the three-time Olympic champion.

An unpleasant incident almost happened in the finals of the sprint this time.

According to Bolshunov, he almost lost his balance on the descent before the last ascent.

This awkwardness gave Alexander Terentyev a slight advantage, which he managed to hold on to the very end.

The athlete beat San Sanych by 0.46 seconds.

The top three was closed by Ivan Gorbunov.

Young Savely Korostelev stopped a step away from the medals.

He did not look bad in the preliminary stages.

In the semifinals, he ran away from the rest in the company of Bolshunov.

However, in the decisive race, the athlete was first knocked out of the stick, and then he almost flew off the track.

If San Sanych still has competitors in the sprint, then in the distance races in Syktyvkar, the two-time winner of the Big Crystal Globe did not let anyone in.

In the "cutting" for 15 km freestyle, he turned on the speed already on the first lap.

On acceleration, Ustyugov walked at the same pace with him, but by the mark of 4.1 km he was 17 seconds behind.

As a result, the struggle unfolded for the two remaining places on the podium.

It was attended by five skiers at once, who were separated by only five seconds in the protocol.

Artyom Maltsev managed to win silver.

During the race, 900 meters before the finish line, he was inferior to Alexei Shemyakin.

But he added on the last segment of the distance and won the opponent by 0.8 seconds.

“The hardest thing was to start after 10 days at home without much training.

I am pleased that I won several dozens of the guys.

Lucky it's the second one.

A second more - and there would have been a fourth.

Of course, this is not my maximum, ”admitted Maltsev. 

Ilya Poroshkin finished at the same time as Shemyakin.

But the judges did not divide the bronze among the skiers, giving the medal to the latter.

This decision caused indignation in Alexei.

And he criticized the head of the FLGR, Elena Vyalba.

“When you go to the award ceremony third, and suddenly you find out that you are fourth, and they just say to you:“ Get out of here.

And when Vyalba says this to you at the awards - well, sorry, guy, you're a loshara.

And Melnichenko went to hug and kiss.

Everyone who is on the team is a family, and the rest is nobody.

It’s ugly, ”Sport-Express quotes Shemyakin.

However, Vyalbe reacted calmly to the words of the skier.

The specialist noted that she understands Shemyakin's resentment due to missing the pedestal.

“In the preliminary protocols, he was in third place, but they were read from the chip.

This is not considered an official result.

According to official data, he is slightly behind Ilya, ”concluded the head of the FLGR.

The skiathlon for 30 kilometers went approximately according to the same scenario as the “cutting”: there was Bolshunov and everyone else.

However, Alexander stayed in the same group with his rivals for a long time.

Chervotkin and Poroshkin, Ilya Semikov and Yermil Vokuev got to the change of skis for the ridge part almost simultaneously with him.

The latter soon fell behind, and the four moved together up to the mark of 22.1 kilometers.

However, then the three-time Olympic champion turned on the speed and easily left the competition.

With 5 km to go, he already had an advantage of 12 seconds, and in the final protocol it was 27.7 seconds.

In the struggle for the remaining places on the podium, Semikov looked more powerful than the rest.

Chervotkin tried to roll at the finish line, but was only third.

Nepryaeva is out of competition

In women, a stubborn struggle so far is also not going for first place.

Natalya Nepryaeva got in shape and is now calmly cracking down on her rivals.

In the absence of Yulia Stupak and Tatyana Sorina, Veronika Stepanova is trying to compete with her.

But she does not take part in all starts.

So, the Olympic champion missed the sprint in Syktyvkar and the ward of Yuri Borodavko won gold without experiencing any problems on the track.

She ran away from her pursuers at the very beginning of the finale.

She tried to hold on to the owner of the Big Crystal Globe Anastasia Faleeva, but to no avail.

The athlete is only second with a delay of 1.26 seconds, Diana Soboleva is third.

“It can be seen that Natalia is gaining shape and gradually reaching the conditions we are striving for.

Unfortunately, the existing competition for Nepryaeva is not enough.

Therefore, there was a big advantage both in the prologue and in the final race, ”the Match TV specialist quotes.

Stepanova had already taken part in the "cutting" for 10 kilometers in a free style, and there was hope for a fight.

However, she quickly disappeared.

Nepryaeva turned on incredible speed from the first meters and after a couple of kilometers she was 25 seconds ahead of Veronika, who clearly relied on the ending of the distance and at first was inferior to Ekaterina Smirnova and Anastasia Prokofieva.

The latter did not give up and for a long time was the second.

Up to the last straight, Stepanova was inferior to her opponent, but she was able to give everything at the finish line and still took silver for herself.

The rival was content with bronze and was not at all upset because of this.

“Actually, we all communicate well in the same team.

Even today, I went into the locker room and said: “Veronica, you are a monster!

She didn't even give me hope!

There was a lag of eight seconds two kilometers before the finish line, but she still won them back - well, well done!

I always knew that she could give the finish line.

She is strong, of course, ”admitted Prokofieva.

Much more interesting were the developments in the skiathlon.

Nepryaeva decided to break away from the first meters of the classical distance and successfully did it.

On the change of skis, she had an advantage over her rivals in 16 seconds.

However, Stepanova pulled herself together in the classics and approached the leader even before the 11.8 km mark. 

The skiers ran together for a long time, changing places, but on one of the climbs, Natalya broke away from Veronika, not postponing the determination of the winner until the finish line.

“We spoke with the coach different layouts, and today it turned out like this.

Of course, there is no limit to perfection.

There will be another skiathlon at the competitions in Malinovka, where I will try to recoup.

At what point did you release your opponent?


I didn't give up until the very end.

But Natasha turned out to be stronger, ”Stepanova told reporters.

At the same time, summing up the results of the stage, Vyalba noted that of all the races in Syktyvkar, she liked the women's skiathlon and the men's sprint the most.  

“In general, everything is fine, there was a struggle - this is important.

For leaders, including, because you have to force yourself to endure.

In general, everyone who has to show results.

There are some annoying little things - for example, I feel sorry for Nikita Rodionov, who broke his stick.

But then it turned out that she hadn’t broken — if he had known, he would have simply run on, ”concluded the president of the FLGR.