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Filip Flisar
Flisar is the best Slovenian in ski cross country. Foto: Reuters

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Flisar: I was only interested in winning, not 2nd or 3rd place

The Maribor-born wins quarterfinals and semi-finals
19. March 2017 ob 12:51
Sierra Nevada - MMC RTV SLO

Filip Flisar has won 4th place at the world championship in Sierra Nevada after skiing over a pole in the final round and being disqualified.

Flisar, the best Slovenian in ski cross country, had been defending the title of a world champion in the south of Spain. It all looked promising until the final round, as he had had the fastest result in the quarterfinals as well as semi-finals.

Flisar started the final round well and came into second place before dropping the fourth place in the upper part of the ski run, where the Slovenian accidentally tangled his skis with Francois Plac (France), causing both of them to fall.

The two remaining finalists, Victor Norberg (Sweden) and Jamie Prebble (New Zealand) continued the race. The Swede became the new world champion and the New Zealander won silver.

Flisar skies over pole
The Slovenian got up after the fall and crossed the finish line as fourth, but after watching the recording the judges awarded the bronze medal to the French skier. The tangling incident was not to blame but the fact that the Maribor-born skier had already skied over one of the poles before and thus earned disqualification.

Fourth place is no tragedy
Skiing was great. I was a bit angry at first when I crossed the finish line. I was warned against certain things but I fell behind the New Zealander after the start, since he closed me in. If he had not done so, I would have definitely won the race, even if I had to overtake someone in the second part of the course. I simply felt strong; I was convinced I would win. Truth be told, I was only interested in winning. Not second or third place. I didn’t know I skied over a pole and I thought I took third place but then dropped to fourth. But now that the anger has subsided …"

"I think what happened today was what had to happen – even though I skied better than Victor, which I had proven in the semi-finals. Although I couldn’t win, I’m glad Victor did. He’s had a tough season, his girlfriend and our colleague Anna Holmlund has been in the coma for three months. If I’m happy for anyone to win, it’s him. I’ll survive this somehow, after a bit of thinking I’ve realised that fourth place is not tragedy despite everything I’ve had to go through. I’ll have a new opportunity to win the world championship in two years, and at the Olympics before that,” explained Flisar, adding he was not too disappointed.

T. O., A. V.; translated by K. Z.