Christiansen Sprints to Single Mixed Victory

Norway’s Vetle Sjaastad Christiansen trailed Swedish rival Sebastian Samuelsson by four seconds going into the last loop of this afternoon’s Holmenkollen Single Mixed Relay, but in a dramatic last 50-meter sprint and lunge at the finish line claimed the photo-finish victory in 38:43.6, with Sweden .1 seconds back. Christiansen and teammate Juni Arnekleiv with a penalty in her last standing stage needed eight spares in their home stadium victory.

“He was a centimeter before him”

Arnekleiv admitted to being breathless as she watched her teammates final heroics. “I do not think I breathed at all in the last minute. He was skiing so fast that I was like, ‘It’s too far to Sebbe.’ Suddenly he was a centimeter before him in the finish line.”

As for winning at home, she added, “It feels so good. When I had a penalty loop, Vetle kicked ass in the last loop.”

Vetle’s “unbeatable” speed

Christiansen knew he had a chance, after spending countless hours training at Holmenkollen, proving it is never over until it is over. “That is true at least today. This is my training ground. I know how to solve this finish, especially for the last bridge, I used some energy there. The speed I got on the finish line was unbeatable today.”

Finland’s First Single Mixed Podium

Samuelsson and teammate Anna Magnusson used seven spares in their second-place effort. Finland with Suvi Minkinnen and Otto Invenius, with six spares finished third, 31.3 seconds back; the first-ever podium finish in the discipline for their country as well as the duo's first-ever BMW IBU World Cup podiums individually.

Wind, Rain; Sweden, Norway 1-2

Overcast skies, 2C strong winds and increasing light rain set the stage for the final competition day before the BMW IBU World Cup circus packs up for the North American trip. Arnekleiv and Jeanmonnot carefully cleaned the first prone, with Magnusson following by cleaning standing with five shots, and tagging Samuelsson first, followed by Christiansen.

With the wind flags blowing hard and light rain falling in the first men’s leg, Justus Strelow cleaned prone in five shots for the lead but Christiansen rebounded with five perfect shots tagging Arnekleiv first.

Norwegian Penalty

Arnekleiv cleaned her second prone with a spare but ended up on the penalty loop after using all her spares in standing. Minkinnen took the lead when she cleaned in five shots tagging Invenius first ahead of Samuelsson with Christiansen lagging 11 seconds back as the last leg started.

The top three were together for the last prone stage. Christiansen and Samuelsson cleaned prone simultaneously. Samuelsson cleaned standing with a spare, taking a 4-second advantage over Christiansen, setting up the last loop tussle.

Header iconBMW IBU World Cup 7 Oslo Holmenkollen Single Mixed Relay

Last Loop: Photo-Finish

Samuelsson led the last loop; Christiansen made a move as they skied behind the shooting range. In the last 50 meters the Norwegian put on a massive burst of speed, grabbing the photo-finish victory.

Photos: IBU/Dmytro Yevenko, Christian Manzoni

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