Sat, 17 Apr 2021

BERLIN, Feb. 28 (Xinhua) -- Norway displayed their dominance in Nordic Combined by defending the men's normal hill Team Gundersen title and claiming three gold medals on offer so far at this year's FIS Nordic world ski championships in Oberstdorf, Germany on Sunday.

Norway took the win with an advantage of 42.7 seconds ahead of host Germany, while Terence Weber, Fabian Riessle, Eric Frenzel, and Vinzenz Geiger collected the first Nordic Combined medal for the host nation with silver. The bronze medal went to Austria, who finished the race 49.1 seconds behind the winner.

Prior to Sunday's victory, Norwegians Jarl Magnus Riiber and Gyda Westvold Hansen won the men's and women's normal hill Individual Gundersen gold medals respectively.

In the ski jumping part, Austria was the only team in which all four athletes passed the 100-meter mark. A leading score of 527.8 points meant they possessed a 25-second advantage over Germany in the cross-country skiing.

The Germans collected 508.8 points, while Japan was third at 505.5 points, leading to a start delay of 30 seconds on Austria.

With a final point total of 501.5 points, title defenders Norway ranked fourth and started the skiing with a 35-second delay.

Despite an average performance in the jumping, Norway put on a flawless display on the cross-country track. Espen Bjoernstad impressed with two fast laps on the first leg of the race and skied to the best time of 10 minutes 23.8 seconds, which brought Norway past Japan on the last uphill of the second lap. Austria was still 24.7 seconds ahead through Johannes Lamparter's strong performance and Weber was unable to match Bjoernstad and Japan's Akito Watabe, seeing Germany drop back to 40.6 seconds behind at the first exchange.

Norway's Joergen Graabak once again proved his status as one of the best cross-country skiers in the field and caught the leader Lukas Klapfer on his first lap, and Norway's advantage had grown to 13.6 seconds by the second exchange.

Jens Luraas Oftebro and Riiber maintained their leading position, as Norway completed their victory in 43 minutes 57.7 seconds.

Japan dropped back to fourth and was followed by Finland and France. Italy and the Czech Republic were placed seventh and eighth respectively.

Men's big hill individual and team competitions of the Nordic world ski championships are slated for next weekend.

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