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WOC 2016 Relay: Favourite preview – LIVE from 14:00 CET

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[Start Men 14:00 CET. Start Women 16:00] Can Sweden’s Gustav Bergman come back on top in the relay again after struggling in the individual races as in Italy in 2014? Will Tove Alexandersson be the Queen of the championships with 3 Gold medals? Can the Danish women show excellent team performance yet again and serve Maja Alm in medal position?

The relays which mark the end of a great World Orienteering Championships (WOC) in Strömstad, Sweden will surely be very interesting – with 6-10 different teams battling for the medals.

Follow the race here:

Results WOC 2015 Relay

Report from WOC 2015 Relay

Men: Can Norway repeat the team performance from the Long distance?

Last year’s silver medalist Norway is the main favourite after fantastic performance so far in the championships. The Norwegian Team has surely showed that they master the terrain around Strömstad with Gold medal to Olav Lundanes and both Dæhli and Godager Kaas in the Top 6.  France, the bronze medalist from last year, is the second big favourite. The French have shown very good and consistent results both on Middle and Long; 3 runners in the Top 8 at the long distance tells that France is really starting to get one of the big nations on the men’s side. 

The third big medal favourite is last year’s winner, Switzerland. Switzerland’s gold medalist from the middle distance Matthias Kyburz runs the last leg for Switzerland while Daniel Hubmann with bronze from both middle and long runs the second leg. Starting for Switzerland is Fabian Hertner who has not had big success at the championships so far – he has however showed numerous times before that he can handle a first leg on the relay. Finally the fourth main favourite is Sweden with Bakkmann, Bergman and Lind. Here Bergman is the uncertain point after a near collapse at the long distance. Bergman has come back after a non-optimal performance before though, and might very well be the man who decides for Sweden.

This means that we have an extraordinary strong field on the second leg consisting of the three medal winners from the long distance; Olav Lundanes, Daniel Hubmann and Thierry Gueorgiou in addition to the Swede who was expected to become one of the big names of the championships, Gustav Bergman.

In addition to these four favourite teams, there are a number of outsiders like Finland, Czech Republic, Great Britain and Estonia.

WorldofO’s tip Men’s relay:

1. Norway (Godager Kaas, Lundanes, Dæhli)
2. France (Basset, Gueorgiou, Tranchand)
3. Switzerland (Hertner, Hubmann, Kyburz)

Other favourites: Sweden (Bakkmann, Bergman, Lind)
Outsiders: Finland (Kiirmula, Portin, Siren), Czech Republic (Prochazka, Sedivy, Kral), Great Britain (Jones, Gristwood, Haines), Estonia (Vaher, Sild, Sild)

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Women: Can Alexandersson take home another Gold for Sweden?

The women’s relay is even more open than the men’s relay with at least 6 teams who may take the gold medal on a good day. Last years’ winner Denmark is maybe not among the main favourites, but they may still take gold in the end if Klinting runs a good first leg and Bobach can follow up. Not many can beat Ida Bobach on the second leg if she has a good day – and Maja Alm has shown that she is the fastest woman in the startfield.

Sweden is probably the biggest favourite after Tove Alexandersson’s excellent performance when winning gold at both middle and long. Lina Strand and Emma Johansson should be able to serve Alexandersson in a good position so that she can fight for gold. Another big favourite is Norway with this year’s WOC middle silver medalist Heidi Bagstevold on the first leg ahead of last year’s WOC long distance silver medalist Mari Fasting and with this year’s WOC Long distance bronze medalist Anne Margrethe Hausken on the last leg. A tough team which will definitely be in the medal fight. The third big favourite team is Russia with Rudnaya, Mironova and Gemperle. Only Gemperle had has real top results at this years WOC with two individual medals at middle and long, but Rudnaya and Mironova are also very strong runners.

The last two gold medal favourites are Switzerland and this years’ EOC winner Finland. Both have only top runner on the team. Switzerlands first leg runner Julia Gross might have trouble finishing with the group, but if she does, this might get exciting for Switzerland.

WorldofO’s tip Women’s relay:

1. Sweden (Strand, Johansson, Alexandersson)
2. Norway (Bagstevold, Fasting, Hausken)
3. Russia (Rudnaya, Mironova, Gemperle)

Outsiders: Denmark (Klinting, Bobach, Alm), Switzerland (Gross, Hauswirth, Wyder), Finland (Anttonen, Teini, Rantanen)

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About Jan Kocbach

Jan Kocbach is the founder of WorldofO.com - taking care of everything from site development to writing articles, photography and analysis.

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3 comments

  1. Frédéric Vergne

    Glad to see that Ida Bobach will run the relay. Maybe you mentioned it in another publication, but do you have any information about her DNS status in long results ?

    • Bobach on the start list for long was a mistake by the Danish team. It was never intended that she should run the long distance.

      • Kell Sønnichsen

        At the entry deadline there was a very small chance that Ida would run so she was entered. When it was clear that she would not run – weeks in advance – the Danish team tried to get her off the start list but the organizers didn’t delete her.