“Why shouldn’t we take up Mora–Sälen as a national ski race, right now, as we are about to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Gustaf Eriksson’s liberation of Sweden?”
It’s editor-in-chief Anders Pers who brings this up in the Vestmanlands Läns Tidning newspaper on February 10, 1922. The invitation is sent out on March 7, the first skier is registered by March 10 and the first Vasaloppet is held on March 19. Anders Pers then made a speech for participants and spectators gathered by the Gustav Vasa statue in Mora on the evening after the race:
“People gather into communities and live with increased comforts, which puts the community’s resilience and strength into danger… This danger could lead to a weakening and degeneration, and it’s evoked a cry for sports to act as a conscious effort to maintain and increase the community’s strength and resilience.”
The vision is set. Vasaloppet is for a healthier Sweden.
During the hundred years that follow, Vasaloppet evolves from being just a competition race on the first Sunday in March to an engine for public health and sporting activities. A living movement, and something to celebrate!
We started with a tour to get Sweden moving in the autumn of 2021, continued by recreating the first historic Vasaloppet with Jubileumsvasan on February 12, and headed straight into a ten-day celebration with Vasaloppet’s Winter Week 2022.
When the summer came we focused on mtb and running with the Vasaloppet’s Summer Week wich started with Cykelvasan Öppet Spår, Friday, August 12, and finished with a whole day of running in the Vasaloppet arena Saturday, August 20.
Now we take aim at the next 100 years – for future victories.