Road To The Olympic Games

Russians finish 1-2 in World Cup cross-country event

Maxim Vylegzhanin and Alexander Bessmertnykh of Russia put a small dent in Norway's domination of cross-country skiing with a 1-2 finish in the men's 10-kilometer World Cup race in Falun on Saturday.

Norway's Therese Johaug won the women's 5k, her 13th World Cup win of the season

Maxim Vylegzhanin of Russia won the men's 10-kilometre World Cup cross-country race, helping the Russians finish in the top two positions. (Jon Olav Nesvold/AFP/Getty Images)

Maxim Vylegzhanin and Alexander Bessmertnykh of Russia put a small dent in Norway's domination of cross-country skiing with a 1-2 finish in the men's 10-kilometre World Cup race in Falun, Sweden, on Saturday.

Maurice Manificat of France finished third with the first Norwegian, Emil Iversen, fourth in the classical-style race.

The top Canadian finisher was Devon Kershaw, who's time of 26:48.9 was good for 44th. Other Canadians were Alex Harvey who placed 52nd, Graeme Killick who placed 55th and Len Valjas who finished 80th.

In the women's 5-kilometre race, Norwegians took the top four spots, with overall leader Therese Johaug winning her 13th World Cup race of the season.

Heidi Weng finished in second, 18.6 seconds behind. Ingvild Flugstad Westberg came third.

Canada had two participants in the race, with Emily Nishikawa placing 64th and Andrea Dupont finishing 67th.

Five-kilometre races are quite rare and Johaug said she knew it would be a tough distance. "I am really happy to win, as it's not my favourite distance so that makes it even better," she said.

Johaug is now 132 points clear at the top of the overall standings, ahead of Westberg. Weng is in third, 443 points behind Johaug.

The leader of the men's standings, Martin Johnsrud Sundby, finished fifth in Falun but still leads by 715 points ahead of fellow Norwegian Finn Haagen Krogh. Petter Northug Jr., also of Norway, is in third place, 727 points behind Sundby.

With files from CBC Sports

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