Who will represent their countries at WOC was decided as around 15 nations gathered for two test races at Rokke in Østfold last weekend.

As a result of the big turnout both the women’s and men’s classes were split on two different courses on both races.

The result lists didn’t exactly bring any major surprises. In the long-distance the course with the Swedish and Swiss runners was won by Lina Strand ahead of the pre-selected Tove Alexandersson. The men’s course was won by Sweden’s Emil Svensk with Frenchman Lucas Basset in second. In the second course the Norwegians and Fins among others ran. Venla Harju and Marika Teini secured a double for Finland with Norwegian Marianne Andersen in third. In the men’s course 2 Norway took the double through Olav Lundanes and Magne Dæhli. In the middle-distance Svensk and Lundanes once again came out victourious, whilst Alexandersson and Andersen were the best in each of the women’s courses.

- I’m obviously relieved. I’ve done some extremely rough training this winter, and to receive a confirmation like this feels wonderful. It was a stable overall performance with a couple of control mistakes. On the map the terrain resembles Gothenburg but it’s even nicer out in the terrain. I feel physically strong, Lina Strand said.

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PHOTO: Lina Strand sprinting towards the finish line on the middle distance. Photo: Martin Siewartz Nielsen

Only beaten by Tove Alexandersson on the middle Strand is hoping for a chance to compete in all three distances in WOC 2019. 

The same can be said about Emil Svensk.

- Winning feels great. During the long-distance it didn’t feel like I had super flow but made up for it when we reached the heaviest areas. I probably wasted around a minute and a half on an early route choice, but overall it was a good race. The middle-distance was solid the whole way through, except from a few seconds on control misses and that my legs didn’t feel as fresh as on Friday. But I’m happy with both my races, Svensk said.

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PHOTO: Emil Svensk showing great form ahead om WOC2019. Photo: Terje Antonsen

- My performances tell that I’m where I’m supposed to be for the moment. My orienteering is controlled, apart from some small mistakes in the beginning of the middle. Now my game plan is to only train for a while to peak at WOC. I believe that there’s still room for some improvements, Olav Lundanes said after his two victories.

Marianne Andersen won the middle and came third behind Venla Haju and Marika Teini on the long-distance.

- I’m quite contended with both races, but most of all the middle. Some small mistakes here and there, but that is hard to avoid. Physically I actually felt stronger on the long that I did on the middle, Andersen said.

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PHOTO: Marianne Andersen won the Norwegian class on sunday. Photo: Martin Siewartz Nielsen

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