Beijing Olympics ski tracks – what are they like? Tough with a capital T , says the man in the know

Without further ado, we give the floor to Max Volkov, distance squad coach in Team China, who is currently at Kuyangshu Nordic and Biathlon Center in Zhangjiakou – the future Olympic venue :

Overall,the Olympic tracks are quite balanced and harmonious for the lack of better description when it comes to a combination of uphills and descents. As one would imagine, there are no easy race profile configurations at the top level competitions in principle.

But in Beijing there are added factors:

The one that gets mentioned a lot is the altitude. The courses are laid on or above 1700m – that’s higher than any FIS World Cup races in Europe.

During the Olympic Games, the weather is expected to be cold and dry. That would make the snow slow. So, in distance races, the athletes with high functional readiness and lean muscle mass could have an advantage.

The courses are mostly on the open plane and the are very strong winds at times.

Following the recent decision by FIS to shorten the men’s sprint circle, athletes specializing in this discipline may have an advantage.

What does Beijing tracks profile resembles ? Probably, Holmenkollen minus demanding downhill curves, some say Planica racecourse profiles look similar.

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