Johaug’s nightmare soon over, and it’ll be strange without Bjørgen

Therese JohaugMarit Bjørgen (L) and Therese Johaug.Photo: Jon Olav Nesvold / NTB scanpix

On Wednesday, Therese Johaug’s doping penalty story comes to a close.Manager, Jørn Ernst, and coach, Pål Gunnar Mikkelsplass, have been through a tough as well as Johaug.


Johaug will have soon completed 18 months of exclusion by ‘Idrettens Voldgiftsrett (CAS).’ This was handed down after a positive doping test for clostebol.

“This has gone a long way in stages, which certainly helped her in this process.That she first wanted to win the World Cup (Falun) and then the Olympic Games (Pyeongchang) made Therese have a goal on the way after all,’’ said Ernst to NTB news.

Rumours swirl about a runner who is better than ever. The tests must be in a separate league.

Mikkelsplass believes the cross country star won victory, and that training life will be able to cushion in a way missed by Marit Bjørgen on the Norwegian women’s national team in cross country skiing.

The Nansen runner is back in the starting line next season, but gold lover Marit Bjørgen is gone. The veteran from Rognes retired in the current season.

Mikkelsplass admitted that Bjørgen’s exit will be noticed.‘’Nice’’

“It will be strange at the first meets without Marit, for she has almost always been there. At the same time, they have a close friendship. They’re just a phone call away,’’ Mikkelsplass told NTB.

He believes that Bjørgen can benefit from Johaug, even after retirement.

“They will still be able to use each other. This applies to Marit, even when she has left the job. They can give advice to each other. It will be needed by Therese, but as mentioned, mostly at the beginning. People are adaptable.’’


© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today