Joy for Northug and Cologna
Sun, 20 Mar 17:08:00 2011
Norway's triple world champion Petter Northug won the season-ending World Cup finals in Falun with Swiss Dario Cologna securing the crystal globe for the overall World Cup title.
The twice Olympic champion crossed the line in 37 minutes 49.6 seconds in the 15km pursuit, by far the fastest time on the day, as he sealed gold in a combined time of 1:46:32.0.
Sweden had high hopes of at least a medal on home snow as Emil Joensson and Daniel Rickardsson went into the final stage in second and third place respectively.
But both failed to produce the goods on Sunday as Northug finished 1 minute 45 seconds ahead of compatriot and teenage sensation Finn Krogh while Cologna was third.
For Cologna it was the second time he had lifted the World Cup title.
The race marked the final competition for France's 35-year-old 2005 pursuit world champion Vincent Vittoz, the seven-times World Cup race winner bowing out in 22nd place.
Meanwhile, in the women's competition, Norway's Marit Bjoergen powered to a convincing win in the women's 10km pursuit.
Falun: Men's race
The three-times Olympic champion built on a one minute 14 second head start to finish in 27:58.0.
Overall World Cup champion Justyna Kowalczyk of Poland trailed Bjoergen by 1:58.
Another Norwegian, Therese Johaug, was third, 2:30.4 behind.
Sprint specialist Petra Majdic of Slovenia crossed the line in ninth place in the final race of her career.
Bjoergen, who turns 31 on Monday, now has 46 career World Cup wins, equalling a record held by Norwegian great Bjorn Dahlie.More Than The Games / Eurosport