Swedish youngster Linn Svahn saw in the New Year in perfect fashion by roaring to cross-country sprint victory in the opening event of the 2021 Tour de Ski in Val Müstair, Switzerland.
The reigning Cross-Country World Cup sprint champion – making her first appearance at the 15th edition of the prestigious 10-day Tour de Ski – roared to top spot in the final with a time of 3:32.01.
But there was plenty of drama behind her, as a coming together between Slovenia's Anamarija Lampic and home favourite Nadine Fähndrich saw the latter fall and the former demoted to sixth place.
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As a result, the USA's Jessie Diggins picked up the silver medal, while Svahn's compatriot Frida Karlsson completed the podium in third.
Svahn, 21, said: "I am so happy to have reached my expectations today because I was not sure how my body was going to handle this altitude.
"Now I have to focus day-by-day, but first I have to try to recover my legs again after this really tough race."
While Svahn will look to build on her latest World Cup victory in a bid to emulate her red bib-winning exploits last year, immediate attention will now turn to the second Tour de Ski event, the 10km mass start at the same venue on Saturday.
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