Simen Hegstad Krueger led a Norway clean sweep in the men's 15km individual free cross-country skiing at Planica ©Getty Images

Norway claimed a clean sweep in the men’s 15 kilometres individual free cross-country skiing event at the Nordic Skiing World Championships in Planica.

Gold went to four-time Olympic medallist Simen Hegstad Krüeger, who took the title in 32min 17.4sec.

Victory gave Krüeger a second title of Planica 2023, after his win in the men’s skiathlon on Friday (February 24).

In today’s 15km individual free Krüeger started at a fierce pace, not knowing the advantage of the time splits of his rivals who were behind him, which caused him to slow later on.

After setting the mark, he waited to see how others would fare, and compatriot Harald Oestberg Amundsen was not able to catch him, finishing 5.3sec behind in 32:22.7 to take the silver medal.

The podium was completed by Hans Christer Holund, who ensured a Norwegian sweep of the top three as he took the bronze medal in 32:42.0, finishing 24.6sec behind winner Krüeger.  

On a busy day of action at Planica 2023, medals were also handed out in the women’s HS138 ski jumping competition.

Victory went to current junior world champion Alexandria Loutitt of Canada who took her first senior World Championship title.

Loutitt recorded 134.5 metres in round one scoring 130.9 points, before in round two she jumped 136.5 metres to score 133.5 points and finish on a total of 264.4 points.

Junior world champion Alexandria Loutitt took her first senior World Championship title as she won the women's HS138 ski jumping competition at Planica 2023 ©Getty Images
Junior world champion Alexandria Loutitt took her first senior World Championship title as she won the women's HS138 ski jumping competition at Planica 2023 ©Getty Images

The silver medal went to defending champion Maren Lundby of Norway, who registered a new hill record in round one after jumping 139.5 metres.

This put her on the same score as Loutitt after round one as she also scored 130.9 points, with Lundby then registering 133.0 metres in round two to score 123.1 points and finish on 254.0 points.

The podium was completed by Katharina Althaus of Germany, who was looking for a fourth gold medal of the Championships after individual, team and mixed team normal hill golds.

Althaus recorded jumps of 120.5 metres and 128.0 metres, scoring 126.0 and 119.9 points respectively as she finished with 245.9 points.

In the Nordic combined, medals were awarded in the men’s team large hill HS138/4x5km event, with more Norwegian success.

In snowy conditions Norway’s quartet of Espen Andersen, Jens Luraas Oftebro, Joergen Graabak and Jarl Magnus Riiber showed a strong team performance in the ski jumping element, including a new hill record from Riiber.

Riiber went last in the cross-country skiing relay for Norway and together with medal rivals Germany and Austria launched the crucial attack just outside the stadium, enough to take victory in a time of 47:20.4.

The silver medals went to Germany’s quartet of Eric Frenzel, Vinzenz Geiger, Johannes Rydzek and Julian Schmid who overturned a three-second deficit to Austria following the ski jumping phase, finishing in a time of 47:29.4.

Austria’s quartet of Martin Fritz, Lukas Greiderer, Stefan Rettenegger and Johannes Lamparter completed the podium, finishing in a time of 47:29.7.