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Denifl wins Nordic combined World Cup event

CHAIKOVSKIY, Russia (AP) — Wilhelm Denifl of Austria took advantage of a weakened field to claim his first career individual Nordic combined World Cup victory on Sunday.

Denifl, the 2003 team world champion, produced the longest jump during a training session and got a 30-second advantage over second-placed Evgeniy Klimov of Russia at the start of the race after the jumping portion of the competition was cancelled because of high winds.

Denifl led the 10-km race from the start and never looked back. He finished in 26 minutes, 11.0 seconds. Bjoern Kircheisen of Germany was 22.4 seconds behind for his second second-place finish in as many days. Miroslav Dvorak of the Czech Republic was another 0.2 seconds behind to claim his second podium finish in two days.

The victory lifted Denifl to ninth place in the overall World Cup standings. Most of the top medal contenders for the Sochi Olympics skipped the meet in Chaikovskiy, a town in the Ural mountains more than 600 miles (1,000 kilometers) east of Moscow.

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