Chinese junior skier Dinigeer Yilamujiang caused a cross-country sensation at the World Cup stage in Gala, Norway, winning the women’s 5km freestyle race where she beat a number of home favorites.
The 18-year-old talent clocked a time of 13 minutes 59.7 seconds to finish first, ahead of Elena Rise Johnsen and Tuva Anine Brusveen-Jensen who took silver and bronze respectively.
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Dinigeer recorded her first victory this season, proving that Chinese athletes are preparing intensely for their home 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing.
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Chinese teams have been making concerted efforts to develop in winter sports, posting improved results in figure skating, short track and speed skating, with ski disciplines being a weak spot of the progressively developing team.
But, with the emergence of young stars like Dinigeer, they will hope to make a significant breakthrough in a sport which was deemed exotic for the country several years ago – even aiming to shatter Norway’s dominance in ski events.
Cross-Country Competitions (Gaalaa, NOR, Dec 1, 2019) – Junior Women’s 5 km F1. Dinigeer YILAMUJIANG (CHN)2. Elena Rise JOHNSEN (NOR)3. Tuva Anine BRUSVEEN-JENSEN (NOR)https://t.co/vQX4QfZZrWpic.twitter.com/tXHyslyqol
— XC-skiing info (@MasashiKohmura) December 2, 2019
Chinese biathlon bosses invited Norwegian Olympic legends Ole Einar Bjorndalen and his wife Darya Domracheva to train the national team for the home Games in Beijing.