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Crown Prince Haakon defeats Crown Prince Frederik in Norway’s toughest ski competition

After about four hours of skiing, Crown Prince Haakon of Norway crossed the finish line in Norway’s oldest and hardest ski race today. Approximately 24 minutes later the Danish Crown Prince, Frederik, crossed the finish line, and Crown Prince Haakon had beaten him once again.

In recent years, Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Prince Frederik have participated in “Birkebeinerrennet” together. Before the competition began, the two appeared in a good mood, and although Crown Prince Frederik was beaten by his Norwegian colleague, he was still happy when he finished.

“It is difficult, but also very nice,” said Crown Prince Haakon when he had finished the competition. Crown Prince Haakon completed with the time 3:58:09, while Crown Prince Frederik crossed the finish line with the time of 4:22:55, which was a definite improvement from last year. By comparison, the Norwegian skier Martin Johnsrud Sundby won the competition at 2:20:53.

Martin J. Sundby is one of the best skiers in Norway. Here he is congratulated by King Harald after he won a competition at Holmenkollen last weekend. Photo: Liv Anette Luane, Det kongelige hoff / The Royal Court

This race was something both Crown Princes Haakon and Frederik completed as individuals. Neither on the official calendar of the Norwegian or the Danish Royal Family was it listed that the two would participate in the competition.

Birkebeinerrennet is a ski race with royal history and was established in 1932 in memory of the trip that Torstein Skevla and Vald Skrukka had with King Haakon Håkonsson in 1206. The race takes place between the Norwegian mountain villages Lillehammer and Rena and is 54 kilometres long.

Torstein Skevla and Vald Skrukka carry King Haakon over the Norwegian mountains. This happened during the Norwegian civil war and secured the future that Norway should continue to be governed by a Norwegian king. Photo: The Ski Museum via Wikimedia Commons.

Crown Prince Haakon led throughout the run and passed all the test points ahead of his Danish competitor. Crown Prince Haakon thanked the organisers and the volunteers who make it possible to go Birkebeinerrennet before he left, as well.

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