Finland’s Pinja Mäkinen won the gold medal in convincing fashion, finishing with a score 48.5 seconds better than silver medallist Antti Rusanen. The gap to third-placed Petteri Hakala was smaller, just 10.5 seconds.
Four in the top six is a great result for Finland; the team has concentrated on TempO technique training in the build-up to these championships, and it showed.
The Final passed without the controversy that marked the qualification competition earlier in the day, and it became clear as the competition developed that Mäkinen, one of the later starters, was heading for a win. Best Norwegian was Sondre Ruud Bråten in fourth place, 100 seconds down on the winner. The Waaler father-son competition within the Norwegian team was narrowly won by father Lars Jacob over son Martin Aarholt by 7.5 seconds; they took tenth and eleventh positions repectively. Best from Sweden was Erik Stålnacke in sixth place.
Most successful competitor by far in these championships is Antti Rusanen with 2 gold medals and 1 silver.
So ends a memorable European Championships on Slovakian terrain, enthusiastically organised by a competent team led by Dusan Furucz. The other major event of the season, the World TrailO Championships, will be held in Latvia in early August.
Leading results, TempO Final
- Pinja Mäkinen FIN 334 seconds
- Antti Rusanen FIN 382.5
- Petteri Hakala FIN 393
- Sondre Ruud Bråten NOR 434
- Sami Hyvönen FIN 440
- Erik Stålnacke SWE 456.5