Alexey Chervotkin (2) leads teammates Alexander Bulshonov and Denis Spotsov during the freestyle leg of the men’s skiathlon Saturday at Soldier Hollow. (U.S. Ski Team-Tom Kelly)
SOLDIER HOLLOW, UT (Feb. 4,2017) - Russia swept the podium once again, this time with a trio of athletes crossing the line together in the men’s 15k/15k skiathlon at Soldier Hollow. Alexander Bulshonov was awarded gold, Alexey Chervotkin the silver and Denis Spotsov the bronze.
The three had skied together nearly the entire 30k race, well ahead of a chase group of Jules Lapierre of France and Jason Rueesch of Switzerland.
As the three Russians came off the final hill after a grueling 30k, they locked arms on the downhill and coasted together into the stadium. As they came to the finish line, they stopped in unison seeking to cross together.
Russian teammates Alexander Bulshonov (left), Denis Spotsov and Alexey Chervotkin cross the line together during Saturday’s U23. (U.S. Ski Team-Tom Kelly)
The competition jury reviewed timing and scoring records, along with photo assets and records of the finish referee, to ensure that the ranking was correct. According to FIS rules, the boot toe crossing the line is the determining factor (ICR 316.4.1).
It was the second straight gold for Bulshonov, who won the 15k freestyle two days earlier.
The USA had three in the top 15 led by Paddy Caldwell (Lyme Center, NH) of Stratton Mountain School in ninth - his second top 10 of the Championships. John Hegman (Huntington, VT) of the Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation was 11th and Adam Martin (Marquette, MI) of Northern Michigan University 15th.
Alexander Bulshonov took gold in the men’s 15k/15k skiathlon, his second of the U23 World Championships.
A trio of Russians skied together most of the way, stopping at the finish line to cross together.
Alexey Chervotkin was awarded silver and Denis Spotsov the bronze.