Estonia's Smigun, Italy's Piller Cottrer win in Norway

Estonia’s Smigun, Italy’s Piller Cottrer win in Norway{mosimage}Kristina Smigun of Estonia and Italy’s Pietro Piller Cottrer made their marks in the Norwegian resort of Beitostoelen, Norway, on Saturday, winning the women’s 10km and men’s 15km freestyle races.

Smigun, last year’s overall World Cup runner up, began the day with a victory in the women’s race, 21 seconds ahead of Ukraine’s Valentina Shevchenko and 25 seconds in front of Germany’s Claudia Kuenzel.

Italy’s Gabriella Paruzzi, who finished fourth, retained her lead in the World Cup standings with 150 points, thanks to her victory at the World Cup opener in Dusseldorf, Germany, three weeks ago.

On the men’s side, Piller Cottrer displayed some impressive early-season form by winning the men’s 15km race, crossing the line in 32:59.0. Norway’s Tore Ruud Hofstad finished second, four seconds behind, while Germany’s Axel Teichmann took third, 7.6 seconds back.

The only U.S. skiers in men’s race were Kris Freeman and Carl Swenson. Freeman finished 28th (34:05.9) and Swenson was 60th in 35:00.8. No North Americans competed in the women’s race.

Piller Cottrer and Sweden’s Peter Larsson now lead the men’s World Cup standings in a tie at 100 points.

World Cup Cross-Country
Beitostolen, Norway
November 22, 2003

Women’s 10km Freestyle
1. Kristina Smigun (Estonia) 24 minutes 35.7 seconds
2. Valentina Shevchenko (Ukraine) 24:57.0
3. Claudia Kuenzel (Germany) 25:00.7
4. Gabriella Paruzzi (Italy) 25:03.0
5. Olga Savialova (Russia) 25:06.3
6. Marit Bjoergen (Norway) 25:17.2
7. Hilde Pedersen (Norway) 25:19.0
8. Alena Sidko (Russia) 25:22.6
9. Evi Sachenbacher (Germany) 25:24.4
10. Sabina Valbusa (Italy) 25:24.5
No North Americans competed.

Men’s 15km Freestyle
1. Pietro Piller Cottrer (Italy) 32:59.0
2. Tore Ruud Hofstad (Norway) 33:03.0
3. Axel Teichmann (Germany) 33:06.6
4. Fulvio Valbusa (Italy) 33:15.1
5. Rene Sommerfeldt (Germany) 33:17.2
6. Fabio Santus (Italy) 33:18.0
7. Lars Berger (Norway) 33:18.7
8. Mathias Fredriksson (Sweden) 33:22.4
9. Vincent Vittoz (France) 33:30.7
10. Valerio Checchi (Italy) 33:31.2
North Americans:
28. Kris Freeman (U.S.) 34:05.9
60. Carl Swenson (U.S.) 35:00.8

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