Norway women win, Finns cross first in men's race

Wed Feb 19, 2014 9:06am EST
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By Dmitriy Rogovitskiy

ROSA KHUTOR, Russia (Reuters) - Norway, anchored by five-times Olympic champion Marit Bjoergen, won the women's team sprint at the Winter Games on Wednesday while Finland were first across the line in the men's race but face a protest after a German skier took a tumble.

Bjoergen paired up with Ingvild Flugstad Oestberg to bring Norway home in 16 minutes 04.05 seconds and win the country's fourth cross-country skiing title at these Games.

Norway's men, who have been underperforming in Sochi, could do no better than fourth in a crash-hit final won by Finland, who were ahead of Russia and Sweden.

The Swedes have 11 cross country medals in Sochi to Finland's eight, but only two golds.

Germany's Tim Tscharnke hit the ground after bumping into Sami Jauhojaervi. The Finn, who was ahead, changed his line just before the final sprint.

Organizers said: "a jury decision was in process after a collision between Sami Jauhojaervi and Tim Tscharnke during the last leg of the men's team sprint classic final at Laura cross country course on Wednesday".

Tscharnke said Jauhojaervi took his line, causing him to fall.

"The Finnish guy crossed my line, that's why I fell," he told reporters after Germany finished seventh. "I simply couldn't do anything. We'll protest."   Continued...

Norway's Marit Bjoergen competes in the women's cross-country team sprint classic final during the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics February 19, 2014. REUTERS/Michael Dalder