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Kristoff: Now it’s Zakarin’s chance at the Arctic Tour of Norway

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Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) speaking with the press

Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) speaking with the press
(Image credit: ASO)
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Sven Erik Bystrøm and Alexander Kristoff on the stage with Katusha

Sven Erik Bystrøm and Alexander Kristoff on the stage with Katusha
(Image credit: ASO)
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Sam Bennett (Bora-Argon 18)

Sam Bennett (Bora-Argon 18)
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Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) speaking at the pre-race team presentation

Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) speaking at the pre-race team presentation
(Image credit: ASO)
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Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) wins the opening stage

Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) wins the opening stage
(Image credit: ASO)

Despite leading the Arctic Race of Norway after two stages, Alexander Kristoff is realistic enough to know that retaining the lead after stage 3 will be an uphill struggle.

Saturday’s stage from Senja to Målselv features a punishing final climb and should see the overall landscape at the race shift with the sprinters, such as Krsitoff, giving way to the more capable climbers.

In Kristoff’s Katusha ranks is the ideal candidate in Ilnur Zakarin, who won the Tour of Romandie and a stage of the Giro d’Italia earlier this year.

Kristoff remains in the lead, holding a two second advantage over compatriot Edvald Boasson Hagen but with a gallery of climbers within touching distance of the race lead, Kristoff is resigned to the likely outcome of losing his jersey.