Marius Stensrud from Ski High School Won Abelkonkurransen

Minister Torbjørn Røe Isaksen handed out first prize in the Niels Henrik Abel Math Competition. Martin Widmaier awarded the PGS Challenger prize to the most promising of the youngest contenders.

Math talent Marius Stensrud from Ski high school beat over 3,900 competitors from the preliminary rounds and 29 finalists in the battle for the most coveted science award for pupils in secondary schools in Norway. First prize is NOK 15,000 and the opportunity to represent Norway in the International Mathematical Olympiad in Rio de Janeiro in July. 

- All the pieces have to fall into place to win and they did for me today, says Marius Stensrud. - I am very happy with the victory and I look forward to representing Norway in the International Mathematical Olympiad in Rio de Janeiro this summer.

Anna Lyubarskaja from Trondheim Cathedral School and Fredrik Meringdal from Norway Toppidrettsgymnas in Baerum shared second place. Fourth and fifth place went to respectively Bjørnar Gullikstad Hem from Nadderud high school and Marius Lindegaard from Oslo Cathedral School. Andreas Alberg a pupil in the 9th grade at Fagerborg middle school in Oslo and Johan Fredrik Svele from St. Olaf high school in Stavanger shared sixth place.

PGS Challenger prize goes to the promising Andreas Alberg from Fagerborg middle school. Based on his young age and solid results PGS believes that Andreas is a candidate who has the potential and knowledge to win the Abel Competition in the coming years.

Minister Torbjørn Røe Isaksen presented awards to the participants and was full of praise for the efforts and the importance of Mathematics.

- Abelkonkrransen engages and is open to everyone, and it sparks an interest in math and science among secondary school pupils, says Education Minister Torbjørn Røe Isaksen. - I spend a lot of my time ensuring that schools cater for everyone, even those who are good in math and science and this competition helps achieve.

The competition’s main sponsor, seismic company PGS, will invite all finalists to visit the company's headquarters in Oslo in May in connection with the award of the international Abel Prize in mathematics. Their aim is to give students an insight into how PGS uses mathematics in practice to map the geology beneath the seafloor and to facilitate oil companies to find oil and gas.

- Good mathematics is very important for our business and we want to show the young mathematicians that their skills can create great opportunities for themselves and for the further development of our industry. Norway needs more math and science heroes, and that is our main motivation for sponsoring the Niels Henrik Abel Mathematics Competition, says Jon Erik Reinhardsen, CEO of PGS.

The best six Norwegian finalists from the Abelkonkurransen contest will be among those who will represent Norway in the International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO). They will also be invited by the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters in Oslo as guests of honor during Abel award ceremony in May. Marius Stensrud, the winner of this competition, will also be invited to the banquet at Akershus Castle that the government holds in honor of Abel Laureate.

- The competition is fierce and the pressure is on. That business and politicians support us is a recognition of the importance of the role of mathematics in society, and also an encouragement to the students who have worked hard to get to the finals of the Abelkonkurransen, says Petter Andreas Bergh, head of the Norwegian Mathematical Society.

Abelkonkurransen is a competition organized by the Norwegian Mathematical Society, and has been held for over 30 years. The event is supported by seismic company PGS, Norwegian Videnkaps-Academy, The Norwegian Research Institute and NTNU.