— Published 3 December 2020

Sweden and Finland in turn give up

Norway is emulating. The day after the decision of the Norwegian cross-country skiers not to go to the last two stages of the Cross-Country Skiing World Cup of the year, scheduled for this month of December in Davos (Switzerland), then in Dresden (Germany), Sweden and Finland have in turn announced that they will be withdrawing from these two competitions. “The medical evaluation was of major importance in our decision” the Swedish Ski Federation said in a statement. “As it is, we are unable to find a virus-free path to and from Davos or Dresden. If things go wrong, the disease can have potentially serious consequences for the infected person”. The same fears are invoked on the Finnish side to explain the decision to skip the two European stages.“Everything must be done to ensure that the athletes and the support staff are not infected and do not spread the virus”, explained Maarit Valtonen, the chief medical officer of the Finnish Olympic committee. With the retirement of these three major Nordic skiing nations, the rest of the season looks very uncertain.