Veerpalu skis to Estonian first

LAHTI, Finland, Reuters

Andrus Veerpalu became Estonia’s first Nordic skiing world champion when he edged out Norway’s Frode Estil by 0.2 of a second in the men’s 30km classic style cross-country on Monday.

Veerpalu, 50km silver medallist two years ago, battled around the undulating course in one hour 14 minutes 17.9 seconds to claim one of the narrowest victories in world championship history.

Estil, who had surged to a 3.5 seconds advantage after 20km, was unable to sustain the pace and finished in 10408.1.

He thought he had done enough to win before realising he had fallen just short.

Mikhail Ivanov of Russia was third in 10409.1.