Although Sergei Ustyugov and Stina Nilsson and scared Norwegian riders on Tour de Ski, no one remains no doubt that the Norwegians are the strongest ski nation in the world.
However, cases involving doping, which became public last fall, still did some damage to the reputation of the Norwegians. In some countries, especially painfully reacted to the fact that the Norwegian national team in ski racing asthma give even healthy athletes.
The famous Russian racers who have a hard time following the publication of the report of McLaren, in particular, six Russian athletes were suspended from participation in the Tour de Ski find it quite strange that so many Norwegian skiers — asthmatics.
He was surprised that Norwegians have such problems with asthma
In the Russian team asthmatics are almost there, said Nikita Kryukov in an interview with Dagbladet in an airport Kuusamo (Kuusamo) after the first world Cup stage this season.
— When you race, it’s a very large burden, in particular on the lungs. I find it hard to breathe. But I don’t use cure for asthma, although many do, including in Norway. Asthma — for patients. Perhaps they ought to participate in the Paralympic games. If you take something that gives the effect, it should be prohibited, says hooks Dagbladet.
In our sprint team asthma is not none. I think that perhaps someone in the multipurpose command, it is. But in any case, we asthmatics not as much as in Norway.
— Why Russian drivers among less severe asthmatics than among Norwegian?
I have no idea. We also we train a lot in the cold. Maybe we have other genes? Maybe it’s to do with culture, because of it’s emphasis on those who are perfectly healthy and not to equate the balance of power with the help of medication? I do not know.
He acknowledges that doping at the time was
In light of the organized state system of doping that exists in Russia, according to a report by McLaren on the Russian athletes, it is hardly possible to rely in matters of doping as the truth in the last instance.
Hooks acknowledges that in ski racing in Russia, the athletes used doping, but says that all changed when a new generation of athletes refused to doping in 2009.
— It was really bad. When I started in the world Cup year in 2009 and the Olympic games in Vancouver, there was a lot of doping. It was not good. We, newcomers, who came, wanted to show that we are capable of many things and without doping. We didn’t want to be like the previous generation.
In his opinion, in Russia many people think that the Norwegian “star” used doping.
— I do not think that public opinion in Russia was surprised by the case of Therese Johaug and Martin Sundby Johnsrud. Russian people think that it is simply impossible to run as fast as run by the Norwegians.
Explains why Norway is the best
However, Kryukov — as Alexander Legkov in an interview with Dagbladet last summer — it is absolutely clear that the Russian skiers never suspected Norwegian.
The winner of the “gold” of the Olympics in Vancouver and world Championships in Val di Fiemme (Val di Fiemme) think that Norway is the best for totally different reasons than the use of illegal drugs.
In Norway, the huge coverage. They have a lot of athletes who are still sitting on “the bench”, but who are willing to join. In Russia we have not so many of these athletes, at least, not among the juniors. We have Sergey Ustyugov, but others — equally talented — not so much — said Kryukov and as an example cites Johannes of Chestplate Clabo (Johannes Høsflot Klæbo).
— Norwegians have all the time new names. And Clabo I am not surprised. We met with him before Kuusamo. Our coach said that this is a new generation, they are now on the rise. The rest of us are old men, they challenge us. Clabo is one of the newcomers who come bringing with them something completely new.
“No, I’m not kidding”
In Norway cross — country skiing is the number one sport. In Russia he’s not even number five, maybe number ten. In Russia the most important thing — football. No, I’m not kidding, although football in Russia is just terrible, says hooks and laughs.
— Yes, in our country, football is the most popular sport. But we are trying to grow good athletes in all sports. In Norway, the most important winter sports and handball, maybe some more sports. In Russia, we look at the wider sport. Well, then we people live more. We want Norway and on the track to compete.
— In Russia believe that we must win, although ski racing is actually only Norway are stronger than us. Expectations of people are enormous.
Response Kryukova on allegations of doping
The desire to win was strong at the 2014 winter Olympic games held at home, in Sochi.
Hooks strongly refutes reports of systematic doping in Sochi.
Especially often in the last six months in the doping accused passenger cars.
— Charges related to Sochi, — generally a special case. For me this is a political case. I haven’t seen anything of what the report said. I have not seen that Legkov was doing something wrong. We didn’t hide anything: not where he’d been nor what you have done, ‘ he says.
— We wanted and were supposed to be the best. From passenger cars was a very strong motivation, he’s incredibly trained hard to win at home. We were required gold. For us Russians, the Sochi Olympics were like world war II. We had to win all the rest. Russia is so heavily invested in the competition. The spiritual component was on top. The prize was enormous. We believed in the victory.
Hooks has no doubt that the Russian riders were at the competition, starting with the season 2009/2010.
— After that we were the only cases Meldonium. But I don’t think is doping. It’s all a political case. Meldonium is only slightly stimulates certain muscles. It’s kind of similar to asthmatic drugs in Norway, although I think asthma is worse. They help me to work easy, — says Nikita Kryukov.