Bjoergen defends another title to win skiathlon



VAL DI FIEMME, Italy (AP) — Marit Bjoergen successfully defended another title at the Nordic skiing world championships, winning the 15-kilometer pursuit skiathlon on Saturday.

Bjoergen sped clear of Therese Johaug coming into the stadium to cross the line in 39 minutes, 4.4 seconds. Johaug was 3.4 seconds back to take silver, while Heidi Weng beat Kristin Stoermer Steira in a sprint for the bronze medal.

The 32-year-old Bjoergen, a three-time Olympic champion, won her third individual sprint world title on Thursday. This was her 10th world title overall.

The four Norwegians broke clear during the freestyle portion of the race, with Poland’s Justyna Kowalczyk the only skier who managed to keep up.

Kowalczyk dropped off near the end as Bjoergen and Johaug turned it into a two-way race.