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Russia wins men’s biathlon relay; Bjoerndalen denied record 9th gold

Sochi Olympics Biathlon Men

during the men’s biathlon 4x7.5K relay at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Saturday, Feb. 22, 2014, in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

Felipe Dana

A tough final leg for Emil Hegle Svendsen in today’s biathlon men’s relay spelled the end of fellow Norwegian Ole Einar Bjoerndalen’s bid to win a record ninth Winter Olympic gold medal.

Bjoerndalen was on the third leg of the relay for Norway and went 10-for-10 in shooting before giving Svendsen, your Sochi mass start winner, a slim lead.

He was able to keep it through the prone shooting range, but in standing position, Svendsen missed multiple shots and was forced to take a penalty lap.

That effectively finished the race for the Norwegians, who finished fourth and out of the medals.

Bjoerndalen, known as the “Biathlon King,” was seeking to break his gold medal tie with cross-country skier Bjorn Daehlie. In the mixed relay earlier this week, he passed Daehlie as the most decorated Winter Olympian ever by earning his 13th medal and eighth gold.

Instead, it was Russia, Germany and Austria on the podium, with Russia’s Anton Shipulin (pictured) holding off Germany’s Simon Schempp on the final straightaway to give the host nation its 11th gold in these Games.

MORE: Marit Bjorgen wins third Sochi gold in women’s mass start

1. Russia, 1:12:15.9
2. Germany, +3.5 seconds
3. Austria, +29.8 seconds
16. United States, +5:23.2

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