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(2nd LD) (Winter Asiad) Cross-country skier Lee Chae-won wins silver

All Headlines 12:49 February 21, 2017

(ATTN: ADDS comments, more result, photo)
By Yoo Jee-ho

SAPPORO, Japan, Feb. 21 (Yonhap) -- Cross-country skier Lee Chae-won grabbed the silver medal in the women's 10-kilometer free race at the Asian Winter Games on Tuesday.

Lee finished her race in 30:49.0 at Shirahatayama Open Stadium in Sapporo. The 35-year-old was the 2011 Asian Games champion in the event.

This was South Korea's third medal from cross-country skiing at these Asian Games.

Lee finished 24.4 seconds behind the gold medalist, Yuki Kobayashi of Japan. Yelena Kolomina of Kazakhstan got the bronze medal in 31:14.4.

In this file photo taken on Feb. 4, 2017, Lee Chae-won of South Korea competes in the women's skiathlon race at the International Ski Federation (FIS) Cross-Country World Cup at Alpensia Cross-Country Centre in PyeongChang, Gangwon Province. (Yonhap)

Lee was leading Tuesday's race at the 5km mark at 14:55.1, about six seconds ahead of Kobayashi. But the Japanese rallied in the final half of the race to snatch the title.

"I just wasn't feeling great out there, with some left ankle and right leg issues," Lee said. "I was trying to peak for this competition but it didn't quite go the way I wanted. I even had some flu-like symptoms, and I was exhausted in the latter part of the race."

Lee will take a few more cracks at a gold. She said she will compete in the 5km classic on Thursday, 4x5km relay on Friday and then 15km free mass start on Sunday, the final day of the Asian Games.

Lee has collected 67 gold medals at the National Winter Sports Festival over her 18-year career. She has competed at three Winter Olympics.

Earlier this month, Lee placed 12th in the skiathlon at the International Ski Federation (FIS) Cross-Country World Cup in South Korea's PyeongChang, the best World Cup finish by a Korean cross-country skier.

In the men's 15km free race, the other cross-country event on Tuesday, Kim Magnus finished eighth in 43:35.5, more than two minutes behind the champion, Rinat Mukhin of Kazakhstan.

Kim had won the 1.4km sprint classic gold medal on Monday.

jeeho@yna.co.kr
(END)

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