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Sweden Dominates Inaugural Olympic Cross-Country Team Sprint Races


Swedish men and women have captured gold in the inaugural Olympic event of cross-country team sprint racing at the Turin Games in Italy.

Anna Dahlberg and Lina Andersson teamed to beat Canada and Finland in the women's race Tuesday in Pragelato. The Swedish pair completed the combined rounds in 16 minutes, 36.9 seconds. Bjoern Lind and Thobias Fredriksson then took the men's title with a time of 17 minutes, 2.9 seconds. They edged teams from Norway and Russia.

The demanding 10-kilometer biathlon sprint in San Sicario was won by Sven Fischer. The 14-year German veteran claimed his first individual Olympic gold medal after completing the course in 26 minutes 11.6 seconds. Three-time Olympic champion Halvard Hanevold of Norway (26:19.8) took the silver medal. Norwegian teammate Frode Andresen won bronze (26:31.3).

Defending Olympic women's luge champion Sylke Otto won another singles gold medal with a time of three minutes, seven-point-nine-seven-nine seconds in a German clean sweep of the podium. The silver medal went to German teammate Silke Kraushaar (3:08.115) while Tatjana Hufner earned bronze (3:08.460). A total of 36 medals have been awarded in women's Olympic luge history, and 27 have been won by Germans.

Russian Svetlana Zhurova won the women's 500-meter speedskating gold medal with a combined two-run time of one minute, 16.57 seconds. Wang Manli placed second (1:16.78) and Chinese compatriot Ren Hui was third (1:16.87).

The men return to the slopes in the downhill and slalom combined event. American gold medal hopeful Bode Miller briefly led after the downhill portion until he was disqualified for missing a gate. The mishap follows a disappointing fifth place finish for Miller in the men's downhill on Sunday.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.
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