FALUN, Sweden - Alex Harvey and Devon Kershaw made Canadian cross-country ski history Friday.
Harvey won the men's classic prologue in the second stage of the cross-country World Cup finals with teammate Kershaw finishing third. It marked the first time ever two Canadians shared the podium in a World Cup cross-country ski event.
"I have had some great races this year, but also some real challenging ones too," said Harvey. "I always believed in myself and believed I could win."
Harvey, a native of St-Ferreol-les-Neiges, Que., finished the 3.3-kilometre men's race in eight minutes 16.8 seconds for his first World Cup victory. He had captured silver and bronze medals earlier this season.
Harvey accomplished the career milestone win with his father, Pierre, looking on. In 1987, Pierre Harvey made Canadian nordic history by earning Canada's first-ever World Cup win in Falun.
"It is such a special day for me to get my first individual victory on the same course where my dad's first win was in 1987," said the younger Harvey. "When I found out I won, I was so pumped.
"I ran over and hugged my dad and Devon who was also right there. The wax techs were all there and the whole team was so excited. It is so special."
The elder Harvey couldn't have agreed more.
"To see my son winning today is like a dream,'' Pierre Harvey said. "For sure, it's the best day to watch a ski race.
"I watch it usually on TV or on the Internet but to be here on the same spot that I was skiing so long ago, it's like unbelievable."
Switzerland's Dario Cologna, already the overall World Cup winner, was second, 0.2 seconds behind. Kershaw, a 29-year-old skier from Sudbury, Ont., claimed the bronze, just 3.1 seconds behind Harvey. It was Kershaw's fifth podium finish of the season, including two victories.
Kershaw's third-place finish also cemented second in the overall World Cup standings behind Cologna. Harvey is sixth.
"To be second in the overall is crazy awesome and very hard for me to process right now with two races still to go," said Kershaw. "I'm not sure how many skiers -- cross-country or alpine -- have ever been second overall in history.
"It was a goal of mine all year to finish in the top-three. I wanted to be top-three in the Tour de Ski and finishing fourth still stings, but that motivated me so much for the rest of the year for the overall on the World Cup. I won't believe it until I see it officially in writing -- but to finish second -- this is big time."
And Kershaw said there's no doubt in his mind that a Canadian will one day capture the overall crown. …