Olli Ojanaho’s medal hopes were hanging by a thread

Olli Ojanaho (FIN) (1:05.11) won his third consecutive gold medal at the JWOC today Friday before Simon Imark (SWE) (1:05.54, +0.43) and Simon Hector (SWE) (1:06.07, +0.56).

Ojanaho had to fight for his gold medal this time. He started with a small mistake to the first control into which he later on added another 1-minute mistake on the way to the 7th control. Result of these two mistakes he was almost 2 minutes behind the leaders at the 30-minute mark, but from there onwards he was crushing the field. Ojanaho stayed true to his tactics and ran very close to the line even on the longest leg of the course, clocking the second best time on that one. Then he went on to win the last five legs, leaving the two Swedes closely, but clearly behind himself.

Both Simons started well, but slowly got more tired than Ojanaho in the end and despite a good battle had to acknowledge the superiority of Ojanaho once again.

Simona Aebersold proved the world champion wrong

Simona Aebersold (SUI) (56.03) is a triple world champion at 2017 JWOC after the long distance race on today Friday. Vera Klemettinen (FIN) (59.17, +3.14) took the silver medal and Sofie Bachmann (SUI) (1:02.52, +6.49) the bronze medal.

Aebersold was from another planet today as she won half of the 16 legs on the girls’ course and lost only 55 seconds to the ideal time. In addition she defeated the target time by 3 minutes which was the estimated winning time by the course setter and former world champion Jani Lakanen.

Klemettinen was not far away from Aebersold in the first part of the course but made a worse route choice on the long leg and consecutively continued with more mistakes during the latter part of the race. Regardless of this, she was a clear second today. Bachmann showed how important it is to keep fighting on a long distance: she was as far as 37th at the second control and rose into a medal position during the last 10 minutes of the race.