American Birkebeiner Winners Race to the Finish
Winners were crowned for the 50K Skate and the 55K Classic races.
HAYWARD, Wis. – The 45th Annual 2019 Slumberland American Birkebeiner took place this weekend in Wisconsin.
The men’s and women’s winners of the 50K Skate race were Akeo Maifeld-Carucci and Alayna Sonnesyn both from the United States.
The men’s race ended in a sprint to the finish between three different men.
“The finish was unbelievable today, the crowd was so loud, in my head I kept thinking I gotta wait for the finish. Don’t go too early, gotta wait for the sprint and then I just got hit with that noise and looked at the finish line and just had to go for it,” said men’s winner Akeo Maifeld-Carucci.
Women’s winner Alayna Sonneyson grew up in Plymouth, Minnesota.
She came as a young child to watch her parents, who were even racing today, and idolized the athletes on the course.
When race day came this year, she embarked on her very first Birkie and wasn’t just one of those athletes on the course, she was a champion as well.
“My parents are skiers and they’ve always done the Birkie and as soon as I was born I was a part of this event,” said Sonneyson.
The winners of the 55K classic were Paul Holmes and Cate Brams, both from the United States.