Saturday, December 29, 2007

Kikkan Randall to Ski at Houghton US National Championship

Kikkan Randall
Kikkan Randall
photo credit: Jonathan Selkowitz,
Kikkan Randall became the first American woman to win a cross-country ski event in a World Cup competition on Dec. 16 in Rybinsk, Russia. Not since 1983, when Bill Koch won, has an American taken a World Cup cross-country event. Randall won the 1.2km freestyle sprint, beating Norway's Astrid Jacobsen.

Growing up in Alaska, Randall became a champion cross-country runner. During the long dark days of Alaskan winters, she took up skiing to stay in condition.

The Europeans have always had an advantage over Americans, explained Luke Bodensteiner the US Ski Team's Nordic director. They come from a skiing culture, while American's tend to view the sport as family-oriented and recreational, rather than competitive.

Randall was 19 when she made her Olympic debut in Salt Lake City. She finished 44th in the first Olympic sprint. Last year in Turin, she came in 9th, the best result by an American woman in cross-country skiing.

No American woman has ever won an Olympic medal in cross-country skiing.

Randall and other members of the US team will ski in Houghton, Michigan, for the national championships. The event is staged from December 31, 2007 - January 8, 2008.

There are three streaming web cams where the finish areas can be seen by on line viewers. Follow the link below for the Championships.

from the Taipei Times, "Randall earns first US win in skiing discipline since 80s", Dec 29, 2007
See 2008 Cross Country Championships
These links are checked on the date of the article. As the article ages, some links may become invalid

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