Norway took the lead after a brilliant third leg from Johannes Thingnes Bø. Stryningen brought on Sweden and gave Vetle Sjåstad Christiansen a 50 second lead in the final round.
Christiansen, however, had to use an extra shot on his horizontal shot and created further excitement in the relay when Frenchman Quentin Fillon Maillet fired a full shot.
Vetle Sjåstad Christiansen also had an extra shot from a standing position, while the Frenchman further reduced the lead to 14 seconds after a fantastic shot from a standing position.
So, there was a sudden excitement in the last lap.
Then Sjåstad Christiansen needed advice from teammate Tarjei Bø. In the warm-up area before the final stage, Bø announced that the presenter would have to work hard on the first part of the course.
Just like Sjåstad Christiansen who rose four seconds to Fillon Maillet and decided on the relay.
– When Tarjei gives me this message, I am very aware of it on the last lap when Quentin (Fillon Maillet) is as close as he is. You never know what he will invent. Suddenly, he had a great day and took 10 seconds in the 500 meters, says Sjåstad Christiansen.
– So I open quite hard. He receives negative comments from the second round and this is perhaps one of the reasons why he gives up quite easily in the last round, he explains further.
– Can be the difference between gold and silver
The Norwegians are very concerned about giving each other good and honest feedback during a relay. They think that’s why Norway is so strong in the relay, even if the individual results aren’t quite top notch.
– I think we have additional equipment regarding the relay and how we solve it. We are very open and we exchange very honest and continuous comments, says the presenter of Sunday.
– How crucial is it?
– We don’t talk much until we go out almost the same after the last shoot today. So instead of me starting off calmly and letting him get up on my back, Tarjei told me to go for it first. Such things can mean the difference between gold and silver.
Christiansen continued to rise and in the end Norway won by 21 seconds ahead of France. Russia took third place.
Ghost stadium delivered
Johannes Thingnes Bø struggled this weekend in Hochfilzen and struggled to explain what the poor form is due to. But on Sunday it was relaxed for the ironing which delivered a faultless third stage.
– What has been a bit special so far this season is that all the other races have been good, and all the others have been all night. But now it’s starting to sit a little better, I’m recovering better and I’m more visible. The body has started to get used to fatigue here and then it’s easier to pull through in the next race, says last year’s World Cup winner.
– What does this mean for self-confidence?
– It meant a lot. Today, I do what I planned and I manage to create a trapdoor. This is the work of a third stage. Very happy with the day and good preparation for next week in France.
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