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LYGNA, Nor.— Pierre Grall-Johnson sprinted to 28th spot on Saturday at the Nordic World Ski Championships, in Lygna, Norway.

Ottawa’s Grall-Johnson was the lone Canadian to qualify for the head-to-head heats in the free-technique race after posting the 25th-fastest time on the 1.2-kilometre track. His day, however, came to disappointing end in the opening quarter-final round of the heats.

“I was happy to have qualified but that was not my main focus today so overall, I’m not super happy with the day,” said Grall-Johnson.

The 22-year-old, who was 17th in the World Championship sprint race last year, got off to a great start in his heat, but struggled to gain position on the first hill, and wasn’t able to charge to the front of the six-man pack.

“I was really happy with how fast I got out of the gates, but then at the top of the first climb I got boxed out, strung out, and had no way of getting back on (to the pack). It wasn’t the best finish for me today either, but I know there are more opportunities to come,” added Grall-Johnson.

The top-two athletes in each heat, along with the next two fastest times overall, advance to the next round. Grall-Johnson crossed the finish line sixth in his heat.

Switzerland’s Valerio Grond sprinted to the top of the men’s podium ahead of Russia’s Denis Filimonov, who finished second, and Norway’s Magnus Haabrekke in the bronze medal position.

Other Canadian results included Sam Hendry (Canmore, Alta.) in 56th and Joe Davies (Pemberton, B.C.) placing 65th in the men’s race. Anna Pryce (Calgary) was 35th. Beth Granstrom (Revelstoke, B.C.) placed 44th; Anna Parent (Canmore, Alta.) was 47th; and Ontario’s Bronwyn Williams qualified in 52nd spot.

Sweden’s Moa Hansson was crowned women’s sprint champion. Poland’s Monika Skinder edged out Russsia’s Nataliya Mekryukova for the silver medal.

The final day of the Nordic World Junior and Under-23 Ski Championships will feature the junior sprint races on Sunday.

Complete Results: https://bit.ly/3BHkZyX

Nordiq Canada is the governing body of para-nordic and cross-country skiing in Canada, which is the nation’s optimal sport and recreational activity with more than one million Canadians participating annually. Its 60,000 members include athletes, coaches, officials and skiers of all ages and abilities. With the support of its valued corporate partners – Haywood Securities Inc., AltaGas, Swix and Lanctôt Sports– along with the Government of Canada, Canadian Olympic Committee, Canadian Paralympic Committee, Own the Podium and B2Ten, Nordiq Canada develops Olympic, Paralympic and World champions. For more information on Nordiq Canada, please visit us at www.nordiqcanada.ca.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION:

Chris Dornan

Media and Public Relations

Nordiq Canada

T: 403-620-8731