Finlandia-Hiihto

37 years to become a Worldloppet Master

By Juha Viljamaa, President of the Worldloppet Ski Federation

– My first Race was Finlandia Hiihto in 1979 and there I got my first stamp on my Worldloppet Passport. It was an experience to ski 75 km and survive it. My daddy was an experienced marathon skier and before the race, he gave me an advice: that first of all, you must ski slowly and eat and drink well at every service station. I did it. The result was about 6 hours skiing and plus 1.7 kg weight. But I was not tired nor hungry!

After the first race, I have been skiing only Finlandia Hiihto, many times, because I live in Lahti, the hometown of this race. Easy choice.

Then, in the year 2015, I was elected President of Worldloppet. At that time, I only had eight stamps on my Worldloppet passport. The installation into the office of Worldloppet President was during the Annual General Meeting of the year 2016, so I had one season time to get two stamps: I did it!

So it happened that at the same time when I was installed President, I received my Worldloppet Master Diploma.

To get the diploma, it took me only 37 years.

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