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WOC 2018 Sprint Favourite Preview – Final LIVE from 13:50 CET

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[Qual from 08:00 CET – Final from 13:50 CET – #WOC2018] Daniel Hubmann (SUI), Matthias Kyburz (SUI), Tove Alexandersson (SWE) and Maja Alm (DEN) are the biggest favourites on the individual Sprint which opens the World Orienteering Championships in Riga, Latvia – but the race is open with 10-15 runners or more with medal chances both in the men’s and women’s classes.

Read on for a preview of the favourites for WOC 2018 Sprint – but first some key information about WOC Sprint 2018, Saturday August 4th 2018:

  • Results EOC 2018 Sprint:

Women: Four in a row for Maja Alm?

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Maja Alm (DEN) has dominated the Sprint discipline in the World Orienteering Championships the last years with three gold medals in a row. Can she take a fourth in Latvia? At this year’s European Championships Alm finished only in 4th place – the first championships since WOC 2014 in Italy where the Danish super-sprinter had to travel home without an individual medal in the Sprint. Has Alm’s focus on athletics towards the Olympics in 2020 taken away some of the focus on the orienteering? It this is the case, the European Championships might be just what Alm needed to get back the focus. The shape is reported to be just as good as at the World Champs last year, and three very clear wins at Sprint Scotland last week with good international competition shows that Alm is well prepared. Alm has shown earlier that she is a master when it comes to peaking her shape both physically and mentally to the most important races of the year.

 Maja Alm has dominated the Sprint discipline in the World Orienteering Championships the last years with three gold medals in a row

Alm’s biggest opponent is Tove Alexandersson (SWE). Alexandersson has either struggled with illness (2017), injuries (2015) or decided not to start to focus on other races (2016) at WOC the last years – but has a silver medal from WOC Sprint 2014 and won the European Championships Sprint in Switzerland earlier this year. Alexandersson is one of the few in the startfield who can match Alm’s speed, and Alexandersson also won two World Cup races Sprint in 2017. The battle between Alm and Alexandersson seems very open.

Alexandersson is one of the few in the startfield who can match Alm’s speed

The biggest challengers to Alm and Alexandersson are Judith Wyder (SUI), Natalia Gemperle (RUS) and Galina Vinogradova (RUS). Wyder has done a very strong comeback this year after childbirth, and showed at the European Championships on homeground in May with a silver medal that she is nearly back where she left. With a few more months of training, she may have taken another few steps towards the very top. Wyder has also shown before that she can perform at her very best at the big championships. The two Russians Natalia Gemperle and Galina Vinogradova have both won medals at the last big championships Sprint, and must be counted among the favourites – although Vinogradova did not show her best at the European Championships.

Outsiders: Anastasia Denisova (BLR) took bronze at the World Championships Sprint two years ago, and has since shown many good sprint results despite injury problems.  On a good day Denisova can again fight for the medals. Elena Roos (SUI) has been getting closer and closer to the very top and is also among the outsiders for a medal.

World of O’s medal tip:
1. Maja Alm
2. Tove Alexandersson
3. Judith Wyder

Below is a list of the Top 20 women sprinters at the start, according to a point system which weights medals in the biggest championships the last years highest.

# Name Country Picture Results
1. Maja Alm  DEN Gold WOC Sprint (2017), Gold WOC Sprint (2016), Gold WOC Sprint (2015), Silver WOC Sprint (2012), Bronze WOC Sprint (2014), Gold WC #1, Sprint (2017), Bronze EOC Sprint (2016), Silver WC #2, Sprint (2016), Silver WC #10, Sprint (2016), Silver WC #14, Sprint (2014), Silver WC #9, Sprint (2014), Bronze EOC Sprint (2012), Silver WC #5, Sprint (2012), Bronze EOC Sprint (2010), Bronze JWOC Sprint (2007) Ranked Gold in Sprint World Ranking.
2. Judith Wyder  SUI Gold WOC Sprint (2014), Silver WOC Sprint (2016), Gold EOC Sprint (2016), Silver EOC Sprint (2018), Gold EOC Sprint (2014), Gold WC #2, Sprint (2016), Gold WC #10, Sprint (2016), Gold WC #9, Sprint (2014), Silver WC #1, Sprint (2015), Silver WC #13, Sprint (2013), Bronze WC #14, Sprint (2014), Bronze WC #6, Sprint (2013), Bronze WC #11, Sprint (2012) Ranked 30th in Sprint World Ranking.
3. Tove Alexandersson  SWE Gold EOC Sprint (2018), Silver WOC Sprint (2014), Gold WC #10, Sprint (2017), Gold WC #8, Sprint (2017), Gold WC #1, Sprint (2015), Silver WC #1, Sprint (2017), Gold WC #14, Sprint (2014), Gold WC #2, Sprint (2013), Bronze WC #10, Sprint (2016), Bronze WC #2, Sprint (2016), Silver WC #4, Sprint (2013), Bronze WC #9, Sprint (2014), Bronze WC #5, Sprint (2012), Gold JWOC Sprint (2012) Ranked Silver in Sprint World Ranking.
4. Natalia Gemperle  RUS Silver WOC Sprint (2017), Bronze EOC Sprint (2018), Silver WC #8, Sprint (2017), Bronze WC #10, Sprint (2017), 19th WOC Sprint (2014), 6th WC #1, Sprint (2017), 22nd EOC Sprint (2014), 13th WC #10, Sprint (2016), 29th WC #2, Sprint (2016) Ranked Bronze in Sprint World Ranking.
5. Galina Vinogradova  RUS Bronze WOC Sprint (2017), Bronze WOC Sprint (2015), Bronze EOC Sprint (2016), 4th WOC Sprint (2016), 7th WOC Sprint (2014), 6th WOC Sprint (2013), Gold WC #2, Sprint (2011), 8th WOC Sprint (2011), 6th WC #1, Sprint (2017), Bronze WC #5, Sprint (2010) Ranked 4th in Sprint World Ranking.
6. Anastasia Denisova  BLR Bronze WOC Sprint (2016), 5th WOC Sprint (2017), 12th EOC Sprint (2018), Bronze JWOC Sprint (2013), 32nd WC #10, Sprint (2016), 33rd WC #2, Sprint (2016), 10th JWOC Sprint (2012) Ranked 10th in Sprint World Ranking.
7. Elena Roos  SUI 6th WOC Sprint (2017), Silver WC #10, Sprint (2017), 6th WOC Sprint (2016), 6th EOC Sprint (2018), 6th EOC Sprint (2016), 6th WC #10, Sprint (2016), 14th EOC Sprint (2014), 7th WC #1, Sprint (2015), 14th WC #1, Sprint (2017) Ranked 5th in Sprint World Ranking.
8. Marika Teini  FIN 10th WOC Sprint (2017), 9th WOC Sprint (2016), Bronze WC #2, Sprint (2016), 16th WOC Sprint (2014), 16th EOC Sprint (2018), 11th EOC Sprint (2016), 14th WOC Sprint (2012), 12th EOC Sprint (2014), 8th EOC Sprint (2012) Ranked 12th in Sprint World Ranking.
9. Silje Ekroll Jahren  NOR 8th WOC Sprint (2016), 8th WOC Sprint (2015), 19th WOC Sprint (2017), 10th WOC Sprint (2012), 33rd EOC Sprint (2018), 14th EOC Sprint (2016), 20th WOC Sprint (2011), 21st WC #1, Sprint (2017), 21st WC #8, Sprint (2017), Silver JWOC Sprint (2008) Ranked 23rd in Sprint World Ranking.
10. Lina Strand  SWE Bronze WC #1, Sprint (2017), 12th WOC Sprint (2017), 11th WOC Sprint (2016), 17th WOC Sprint (2014), Bronze WC #4, Sprint (2013), 12th WOC Sprint (2013), 14th EOC Sprint (2018), 15th EOC Sprint (2016), 6th WC #2, Sprint (2016) Ranked 6th in Sprint World Ranking.
11. Karolin Ohlsson  SWE 11th WOC Sprint (2017), 10th WOC Sprint (2015), 13th WOC Sprint (2016), 8th EOC Sprint (2018), 4th WC #10, Sprint (2017), 4th WC #1, Sprint (2017), 20th EOC Sprint (2016), 7th WC #8, Sprint (2017), 5th WC #1, Sprint (2015) Ranked 7th in Sprint World Ranking.
12. Ursula Kadan  AUT 8th WOC Sprint (2017), 23rd WOC Sprint (2016), 18th WOC Sprint (2014), 37th WOC Sprint (2015), 24th EOC Sprint (2018), 23rd WOC Sprint (2013), 22nd WOC Sprint (2012), 34th EOC Sprint (2016), 18th EOC Sprint (2014) Ranked 16th in Sprint World Ranking.
13. Isia Basset  FRA 18th WOC Sprint (2017), 16th WOC Sprint (2016), 27th WOC Sprint (2015), 29th EOC Sprint (2018), 17th EOC Sprint (2016), 17th WC #10, Sprint (2016), 31st WC #14, Sprint (2014), 14th JWOC Sprint (2013), 14th JWOC Sprint (2011) Ranked 39th in Sprint World Ranking.
14. Anastasia Rudnaya  RUS 14th WOC Sprint (2017), 21st WOC Sprint (2015), 5th WOC Sprint (2011), 20th EOC Sprint (2018), 10th EOC Sprint (2016), 23rd WOC Sprint (2012), 21st EOC Sprint (2014), 10th WC #1, Sprint (2017), 12th WC #10, Sprint (2017) Ranked 14th in Sprint World Ranking.
15. Adela Indrakova  CZE 22nd WOC Sprint (2017), 25th WOC Sprint (2016), 23rd WOC Sprint (2015), 33rd EOC Sprint (2018), 34th WC #1, Sprint (2017), 28th JWOC Sprint (2010), 42nd JWOC Sprint (2011), 25th JWOC Sprint (2009) Ranked 44th in Sprint World Ranking.
16. Tereza Janosikova  CZE 24th WOC Sprint (2017), Silver JWOC Sprint (2018), Silver JWOC Sprint (2017), 19th EOC Sprint (2018) Ranked 28th in Sprint World Ranking.
17. Alice Leake  GBR 22nd WOC Sprint (2016), 35th WOC Sprint (2017), 22nd WOC Sprint (2015), 31st EOC Sprint (2018), 37th EOC Sprint (2016) Ranked 48th in Sprint World Ranking.
18. Sabine Hauswirth  SUI Bronze WC #8, Sprint (2017), 7th EOC Sprint (2014), 21st WOC Sprint (2013), 5th WC #1, Sprint (2017), 12th EOC Sprint (2016), 7th WC #10, Sprint (2016), 5th WC #13, Sprint (2013), 13th WC #10, Sprint (2017), 20th WC #2, Sprint (2016) Ranked 8th in Sprint World Ranking.
19. Laura Robertson  NZL 37th WOC Sprint (2017), 29th WOC Sprint (2016), 40th WOC Sprint (2015), 42nd EOC Sprint (2018), 41st EOC Sprint (2016), 18th WC #1, Sprint (2015), 31st WC #2, Sprint (2013), 27th JWOC Sprint (2012), 38th JWOC Sprint (2013) Ranked 36th in Sprint World Ranking.
20. Lea Vercellotti  FRA 33rd WOC Sprint (2016), 29th WOC Sprint (2015), 28th WOC Sprint (2014), 17th WOC Sprint (2013), 45th EOC Sprint (2018), 35th EOC Sprint (2016), 36th WOC Sprint (2012), 18th WOC Sprint (2011), 28th EOC Sprint (2014) Ranked 258th in Sprint World Rankin

Men: Another Gold for Hubmann?

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Daniel Hubmann (SUI) is starting in his 46th(!) WOC race, and still going very strong. Last year Hubmann won the WOC Sprint ahead of Frederic Tranchand (FRA) and Jerker Lysell (SWE) – this year Lysell is out with injury and Tranchand has not (yet) shown the same high level. Hubmann also won the European Championships Sprint on homeground this year – sharing the Gold medal with his teammate Matthias Kyburz (SUI). Kyburz is one of the strongest opponents for Hubmann – being ranked on top  of the World Sprint Ranking, and possibly having a slight edge on Hubmann with respect to pure running speed. Kyburz has not been on the top of the podium on a WOC Sprint since 2012, though, and finished in 4th place last year.

Hubmann also won the European Championships Sprint on homeground this year – sharing the Gold medal with his teammate Matthias Kyburz 

The WOC Sprint in the men’s class is open though, and there are several athletes waiting to exploit the smallest mistake among the two Swiss multiple Gold-winners. The most interesting opponent is Kris Jones (GBR) who has been on the way towards the top for a long time, but finally took the last step up to the medals at the European Championships this sprint with a bronze medal. Also, never forget the Swedes in Sprint; Jonas Leandersson (SWE) was among the very the best sprinters in the world for several years, but has struggled lately. He does however know what it takes to be on top when it really counts, and should be considered as a strong outsider – in that category the two other Swedes Martin Regborn and Emil Svensk also belong.

 Also, never forget the Swedes in Sprint

Another interesting start is Yannick Michiels (BEL) who is among the fastest runners in the field, and could even take away a Gold medal on a good day. Struggling to deliver up to his best in the last World Championships where he was among the top favourites, but maybe this is the year for the Belgian who finished 7th at EOC Sprint? Another very interesting start is Ruslan Glibov (UKR) – finishing 4th at EOC Sprint, and showing medal potential time after time. Can Glibov get up to his potential and take a medal in Latvia?

Other outsiders: Martin Hubmann (SUI) – 5th at EOC Sprint, Vojtech Kral (CZE) – 7th at EOC Sprint and took his first World Cup victory last year, Tim Robertson (NZL) – interesting sprinter who has shown many times that he can battle with the best on a good day, Frederic Tranchand (FRA) – medalist from last year’s WOC Sprint.

World of O’s medal tip:

1. Matthias Kyburz
2. Kris Jones
3. Daniel Hubmann

Below is a list of the Top 20 men sprinters at the start, according to a point system which weights medals in the biggest championships the last years highest.

# Name Country Picture Results
1. Daniel Hubmann  SUI Gold WOC Sprint (2017), Gold EOC Sprint (2018), Silver WOC Sprint (2014), Bronze WOC Sprint (2016), Gold WOC Sprint (2011), Silver WC #10, Sprint (2017), Gold WC #14, Sprint (2014), Silver WC #2, Sprint (2016), 6th WOC Sprint (2015), Silver WC #1, Sprint (2015), Silver WC #9, Sprint (2014), Bronze EOC Sprint (2012), Silver WC #7, Sprint (2013), Silver WC #4, Sprint (2013), Silver EOC Sprint (2010), Gold WC #10, Sprint (2011), Silver WOC Sprint (2008), Silver WOC Sprint (2006), Silver WOC Sprint (2005), Silver WC #2, Sprint (2011), Gold WC #12, Sprint (2010), Bronze WOC Sprint (2009), Silver EOC Sprint (2008), Gold WC #2, Sprint (2009), Gold WC #9, Sprint (2009), Gold WC #13, Sprint (2008), Gold WC #3, Sprint (2005), Gold WC #10, Sprint (2005), Silver WC #8, Sprint (2006), Silver WC #9, Sprint (2004), Bronze WC #10, Sprint (2007) Ranked Silver in Sprint World Ranking.
2. Matthias Kyburz  SUI Silver WOC Sprint (2016), Gold EOC Sprint (2018), Gold EOC Sprint (2016), Gold WOC Sprint (2012), Gold WC #10, Sprint (2017), 4th WOC Sprint (2017), Gold WC #2, Sprint (2016), Gold WC #1, Sprint (2015), Silver WC #1, Sprint (2017), Silver WC #10, Sprint (2016), Gold WC #4, Sprint (2013), Gold WC #7, Sprint (2013), Gold WC #2, Sprint (2013), Gold WC #13, Sprint (2013), Silver WC #14, Sprint (2014), Bronze WC #8, Sprint (2017), Gold WC #11, Sprint (2012), Gold WC #1, Sprint (2011), Silver WC #9, Sprint (2012), Silver WC #5, Sprint (2012), Silver WC #12, Sprint (2012), Bronze WC #6, Sprint (2013), Bronze WC #2, Sprint (2011), Bronze WC #10, Sprint (2011), Gold JWOC Sprint (2009) Ranked Gold in Sprint World Ranking.
3. Jonas Leandersson  SWE Gold WOC Sprint (2015), Gold EOC Sprint (2014), Bronze WOC Sprint (2013), 5th WOC Sprint (2017), Gold EOC Sprint (2012), Gold WC #10, Sprint (2016), 5th WOC Sprint (2016), Gold WC #9, Sprint (2014), 6th WOC Sprint (2014), Gold WC #12, Sprint (2012), Bronze WC #2, Sprint (2016), Bronze WC #13, Sprint (2013), Bronze JWOC Sprint (2010) Ranked 9th in Sprint World Ranking.
4. Frederic Tranchand  FRA Silver WOC Sprint (2017), 8th WOC Sprint (2016), Bronze WOC Sprint (2010), Silver WC #11, Sprint (2012), 33rd WOC Sprint (2015), 14th EOC Sprint (2018), 5th WC #8, Sprint (2017), 6th WC #1, Sprint (2017), 43rd WOC Sprint (2013) Ranked Bronze in Sprint World Ranking.
5. Martin Hubmann  SUI Silver WOC Sprint (2015), Bronze EOC Sprint (2014), 9th WOC Sprint (2017), 9th WOC Sprint (2016), 5th EOC Sprint (2018), Bronze WC #10, Sprint (2016), Silver WC #13, Sprint (2013), 10th WOC Sprint (2014), 7th EOC Sprint (2016), Bronze JWOC Sprint (2009) Ranked 14th in Sprint World Ranking.
6. Vojtech Kral  CZE Gold WC #8, Sprint (2017), 6th WOC Sprint (2017), 6th WOC Sprint (2016), 7th EOC Sprint (2018), 12th WOC Sprint (2015), 17th WOC Sprint (2014), 10th WOC Sprint (2012), 11th EOC Sprint (2016), 6th WC #1, Sprint (2017), Gold JWOC Sprint (2007) Ranked 6th in Sprint World Ranking.
7. Kris Jones  GBR Bronze EOC Sprint (2018), 4th WOC Sprint (2016), 8th WOC Sprint (2015), 18th WOC Sprint (2014), 6th EOC Sprint (2014), 16th WOC Sprint (2013), 15th EOC Sprint (2016), Silver JWOC Sprint (2010), 17th JWOC Sprint (2011) Ranked 19th in Sprint World Ranking.
8. Yannick Michiels  BEL Gold WC #1, Sprint (2017), 5th WOC Sprint (2015), 7th WOC Sprint (2014), 7th EOC Sprint (2018), 34th WOC Sprint (2017), Bronze WC #9, Sprint (2014), 12th WOC Sprint (2013), 7th WC #8, Sprint (2017), 31st WOC Sprint (2012) Ranked 4th in Sprint World Ranking.
9. Martin Regborn  SWE 7th WOC Sprint (2017), 7th WOC Sprint (2016), 4th EOC Sprint (2016), 21st WOC Sprint (2015), 15th WOC Sprint (2014), 16th EOC Sprint (2018), 4th WC #8, Sprint (2017), 4th WC #1, Sprint (2017), 7th WC #10, Sprint (2016) Ranked 7th in Sprint World Ranking.
10. Emil Svensk  SWE Bronze WC #1, Sprint (2017), Bronze WC #10, Sprint (2017), 10th WOC Sprint (2016), 16th WOC Sprint (2017), 18th EOC Sprint (2018), 17th EOC Sprint (2016), 6th WC #10, Sprint (2016), 8th WC #2, Sprint (2016), 10th WC #8, Sprint (2017) Ranked 8th in Sprint World Ranking.
11. Hakon Jarvis Westergard  NOR 8th WOC Sprint (2017), 20th WOC Sprint (2016), 6th EOC Sprint (2016), 26th WOC Sprint (2015), 32nd EOC Sprint (2018), 23rd WC #1, Sprint (2017), 15th WC #10, Sprint (2016), 45th WC #8, Sprint (2017), 35th WC #2, Sprint (2016) Ranked 17th in Sprint World Ranking.
12. Andreu Blanes Reig  ESP 7th WOC Sprint (2015), 12th WOC Sprint (2017), 14th WOC Sprint (2016), 26th WOC Sprint (2014), 33rd WOC Sprint (2013), 24th WOC Sprint (2012), 31st EOC Sprint (2016), 40th EOC Sprint (2014), Silver JWOC Sprint (2011) Ranked 18th in Sprint World Ranking.
13. Andrey Khramov  RUS Gold WOC Sprint (2009), Gold WOC Sprint (2008), 5th WOC Sprint (2012), 19th WOC Sprint (2016), 39th EOC Sprint (2018), 18th EOC Sprint (2016), 10th EOC Sprint (2014), Silver EOC Sprint (2004), 8th WOC Sprint (2010), Bronze EOC Sprint (2008), Bronze EOC Sprint (2006), Silver WC #2, Sprint (2009), Bronze WC #9, Sprint (2009) Ranked 41st in Sprint World Ranking.
14. Jonas Vytautas Gvildys  LTU 10th WOC Sprint (2015), 29th WOC Sprint (2017), 9th WOC Sprint (2014), 32nd WOC Sprint (2016), 7th WOC Sprint (2012), 14th WOC Sprint (2013), 37th EOC Sprint (2018), 4th WC #9, Sprint (2014), 14th EOC Sprint (2014) Ranked 29th in Sprint World Ranking.
15. Tim Robertson  NZL 13th WOC Sprint (2016), 26th WOC Sprint (2017), 20th WOC Sprint (2015), 7th EOC Sprint (2016), Gold JWOC Sprint (2015), Gold JWOC Sprint (2014), 17th EOC Sprint (2018), 4th WC #10, Sprint (2016), 5th WC #2, Sprint (2016), Bronze JWOC Sprint (2013) Ranked 10th in Sprint World Ranking.
16. Robert Merl  AUT 33rd WOC Sprint (2017), 15th WOC Sprint (2015), 34th WOC Sprint (2016), 11th WOC Sprint (2014), 15th EOC Sprint (2018), 7th WOC Sprint (2011), 25th WOC Sprint (2013), 21st WOC Sprint (2012), 30th EOC Sprint (2016) Ranked 25th in Sprint World Ranking.
17. Ruslan Glibov  UKR 4th EOC Sprint (2018), 12th WOC Sprint (2016), 25th WOC Sprint (2014), 12th WC #1, Sprint (2017), Bronze JWOC Sprint (2006) Ranked 15th in Sprint World Ranking.
18. Kenny Kivikas  EST 19th WOC Sprint (2017), 26th WOC Sprint (2016), 27th WOC Sprint (2015), 19th EOC Sprint (2016), 45th WOC Sprint (2013), 15th WC #1, Sprint (2017), 16th WC #10, Sprint (2016), 27th WC #8, Sprint (2017), 35th WC #10, Sprint (2017) Ranked 21st in Sprint World Ranking.
19. Milos Nykodym  CZE 22nd WOC Sprint (2017), 35th WOC Sprint (2016), 39th WOC Sprint (2015), 33rd WOC Sprint (2014), 37th WOC Sprint (2013), 50th EOC Sprint (2018), 31st EOC Sprint (2014), 15th WC #8, Sprint (2017), 31st WC #10, Sprint (2016), Silver JWOC Sprint (2009) Ranked 27th in Sprint World Ranking.
20. Lucas Basset  FRA 17th WOC Sprint (2017), 23rd WOC Sprint (2015), 20th WOC Sprint (2014), 34th EOC Sprint (2018), 23rd EOC Sprint (2016), 24th EOC Sprint (2014), Gold JWOC Sprint (2011), 12th WC #10, Sprint (2016), 22nd EOC Sprint (2012) Ranked 22nd in Sprint World Ranking.

 

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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One comment

  1. Perfect forecast for women! Waiting for men

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