Ustiugov first to lead Tour de Ski start to finish; Canada’s Harvey seventh

Ustiugov becomes 1st to lead Tour de Ski start to finish

CAVALESE, Italy — Alex Harvey of St-Ferreol-les-Neiges, Que., finished a career-best seventh on Sunday in the Tour de Ski.

The 28-year-old Harvey finished the final stage of the circuit — a nine-kilometre skate-ski pursuit race that finishes with the final three kilometres straight up an alpine ski hill that boasts a 28 per cent hill grade — in 33 minutes 7.4 seconds.

“It was quite good today. That was the best position ever for me up the climb, and I had the 14th best time on the day,” said Harvey, who also skied faster than the overall leader Sergey Ustiugov on the day. “I was skiing with Manificat and Heikkinen who had the top-two times on the day. I was with them for a bit, but it was just a bit to fast for me. They crushed everyone on the hill.

Russia’s Ustiugov won the final stage and overall Tour de Ski. Ustiugov won an unprecedented six of the seven stages — finishing with a winning time of 30:27.7.

Saturday’s race winner, Norway’s Martin Johnsrud Sundby, was second to reach the top of the mountain with a time of 31:30.6. Switzerland’s Dario Cologna finished 45 seconds off the leading place in third at 31:46.8.

Canada’s only other finisher was Devon Kershaw of Sudbury, Ont. One of only three athletes in the world to have started all 11 Tours, Kershaw finished in 25th place on Sunday with a time of 39:59.9.

Ustiugov won the renowned Nordic event by 63 seconds with a total time of 3:24:47.9. Sundby was second at 3:25:50.8 and Cologna hopped onto the third step of the overall podium with a time of 3:26:07.0.

Harvey enjoyed a career-best seventh place finish in the Tour with a time of 3:27:27.6. Harvey had four top-10 finishes including his first podium of the season, along with an 11th place result. His previous best Tour finish was 10th in 2011. Kershaw, who had his first top-10 in more than two years in the third stage, was 25th at 3:34:20.1

The Associated Press

Canadian Press