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November 21, 2011
Berger siblings help Norway sweep the podium in World Cup relay

PROUD SISTER: Tora Berger earned a place in the relay team as she celebrated the cross country World Cup podium for the first time.
by Rolf Arne Odiin, Chairman AIPS Nordic Ski and Biathlon commission

OSLO, November 21,2011 - During the World Cup relay in Lillehammer on Sunday ,Olympic biathlon gold medal winner Tora Berger ran an excellent third leg to help the Norway II team to second place.

The quartet of Norway I which included Vibeke Skofterud, Therese Johaug, Kristin Steira and Marit Bjørgen winners of both Olympic and Worlds medals last year, seemed unbeatable and were in a class of their own.

But when youngster Marthe Kristoffersen outran the Finish team on the last lap, it was double success for the Norway team.

“I started the 10 km Saturday just to test myself against the cross country specialist to get more speed ahead of the biathlon season. It was a great surprise when I defeated earlier medal winners like Therese Johaug and Kristin Steira who finished fourth in the competition. When the cross-country coach offered me a place in the relay team the next day I thought it was worth trying it, “Tora Berger said as she joined seven other Norwegian girls on the podium,

An hour later Tora watched her elder brother Lars sprint to victory in the male 4x10 km team.

Together with Eldar Hagen, Finn Krogh and Petter Northug everyone watched the impressive finish of Northug as he easily outran the field.

And the home crowd seemed to be even more impressed when youngster Sjur Røthe managed to keep the teams of Sweden and Russia behind.

The home team marked an unforgettable day with all the 16 members on the podium at the same day.

Even more special was when Tora And Lars Berger celebrated gold and silver. Lars won the World relay Championship in 2005 and is the only biathlon skier to win an individual cross country gold medal as he did in the Sapporo 15 km in 2007.

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