European SkiO Championships: double Middle triumph for Sweden

Sweden’s Magdalena Olsson and Erik Rost emerged victorious from today’s Middle distance race in hilly terrain in Turkey. Olsson took her first-ever international championships win in convincing fashion, whilst Rost’s victory was tight – by just 3 seconds.

This was a welcome win for 28-year-old Magdalena Olsson after taking several silver medals in major competitions, and she won in style, finishing 1.26 quicker than the Finn Salla Koskela. Mariya Kechkina took third place, a further 9 seconds down; she was the fastest of three Russians in the top six.

Tove Alexandersson, Sweden, leader in the IOF World Rankings, started quickly and was the fastest up to control 3. But she lost more than a minute on both of the next two legs and never got back in contention for a medal after that, finishing fifth.

In the men’s race, the outcome for the first two placings was the reverse of the Sprint – but it was a very close call, with Erik Rost’s finish time just 3 seconds quicker than that of Norwegian Lars Moholdt. Rost was in fact a shade slower at control 8, roughly one-third of the distance, but was 17 seconds faster at the two-thirds marker. Sergey Gorlanov, Russia skied consistently throughout and took the bronze medal, 46 seconds slower than Rost.

Erik Rost, 33, leads the IOF World Rankings and is no stranger to gold medals. He will be looking to successfully defend the European Long distance title on Sunday.

Tomorrow is a rest day, and competition resumes on Sunday with the Long distance, which will be a severe physical and mental challenge in the high-altitude hilly terrain around Sarikamiş in Turkey. Follow the competition on livestream on – the race starts at 11.00 local time.

Leading results – Middle distance


  1. Magdalena Olsson SWE 30:27
  2. Salla Koskela FIN +1.26
  3. Mariya Kechkina RUS +1.35
  4. Tatyana Oborina RUS +2.07
  5. Tove Alexandersson SWE +2.19
  6. Marina Vyatkina RUS +2.27


  1. Erik Rost SWE 35:36
  2. Lars Moholdt NOR + 0.03
  3. Sergey Gorlanov RUS + 0.46
  4. Eduard Khrennikov RUS + 1.05
  5. Stanimir Belomazhev BUL + 1.07
  6. Jørgen Madslien NOR + 1.29