Not impossible to beat the Russians

Posted on | March 1, 2007 | Category: News

Staffan Tunis was only 15 seconds from gold on the middle distance. – For sure it’s not impossible to beat the Russians, smiles the Finn.

The 24 year old athlete is the only one not from Russia to have taken a medal in the men’s class during the World Championships in ski orienteering. Both on sprint and the middle distance, Staffan has been among top three. On the middle, the gold was only 15 seconds away.

– I lost those seconds, but Khrennikov also lost seconds when he fell during the race and I am satisfied. Silver is good. I am so close that I feel I really challenged for the gold, says Staffan.

What do you think about the Russians?

– When it’s a championship on home ground they are pushing hard and that gives extra energy. It also takes energy to be beaten and I am feeling that right now, he says.

Earlier this year Staffan became double Nordic Champion. As junior he won gold in the CzechRepublic. Now he is at the top in the senior class.

– I have had the chance to train well for long time without serious injuries or sickness, he says.

Friday is the last competition during the championships – the relay.

– We fight for gold, says Staffan.

Among the women it was silver to Finland. Liisa Anttila was again among the three best.

– But I am not entirely satisfied with my race, I felt a bit stressed, the disqualification on Tuesday was still in my mind, says Liisa.

Success is in your mind

After three competitions, Tatiana Vlasova and Eduard Khrennikov have taken all the gold. They are championship orienteers.

– Earlier in the season we haven’t been the best in Russia in all races, but now is the time to perform well, says Eduard.

Why are you doing so well?

– I compete in a lot of competitions, but this is the most important and it is something I focus upon, he says. Both he and Tatiana again ran good races.

– It was difficult and challenging both physically and technically, says Tatiana.

– I was really tired at the end. During the first of the two loops I fell and lost a lost a number of seconds, so I was glad when I heard that I was less than half minute behind after the first loop.

Tatiana now has eight gold. Eduard has twelve. On the relay, the Russian teams are favourites to win. For the men it could be the sixth consecutive time.

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Eduard Khrennikov won the middle distance in front of Staffan Tunis (left) and Kirill Veselov.

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“Mr. Ski Orienteering” Eduard Khrennikov.

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Tatiana Vlasova on the way to her eighth gold.

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Liisa Anttila took silver on the middle distance.

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