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The Norwegian surprise without penalty for the first cup win of his career, Harjula dazzled on the normal distance

Kontiolahti is used to Norwegian celebrations, but this time the victory of the men's 20 km normal distance was celebrated instead of Johannes Thingnes Bö by his compatriot Sturla Holm Lægreid. Lægreid finished the race without passing shots and left Bö 19.6 seconds behind. Bö missed one in the first shooting position. The experienced Erik Lesser from Germany finished third, for whom the ranking was a pleasant surprise.

– I am really surprised and really, really happy. Nobody expected me to win today, I just focused on what I was doing. Of course, the yellow vest brings a lot of pressure for tomorrow, but hopefully I can forget them and just focus on what I'm doing, Lægreid said.

Bö, who completed the double victory for the Norwegians, also got his season off to a good start, who was happy about his teammate's success and believed that Lægreid would fight for the podium place on Sunday as well.

– I am really satisfied with my competition. I spent time at the shooting location and it paid off, Bö said overall, happy with his opening.

Harjula succeeded

The most gratifying performance among the Finns was made by Tuomas Harjula, who was 14th with one missed shot. For 22-year-old Harjula, the ranking is the best of his career in the World Cup. He cleared the competition for four shooting positions with one miss.

Harjula started the season with the goal of World Cup points, and they got a nice bunch already in the opening race.

– A great bet. The performance was in good control all the time: I was able to ski on the slopes, keep a good pace. All the shootings were well under control, even though I knew the situation was going well, Harjula says.

What did you think after the last shooting spot, what was it like to go skiing the last ring?

– Yes, I got an extra boost from that. I knew that my strength wasn't completely exhausted yet, so I knew that good things would come.

Harjula believes that her success is important to Finnish men, who are also looking forward to the upcoming message. He hopes that the Finnish men will succeed in the World Cup so that the fourth country will enter the competitions. Harjula has a new chance to succeed already on Sunday, when there is a fast race ahead.

– You can leave really relaxed and in a good mood. Relaxed, but humbly set off, Harjula said.

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