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Bjoerndalen becomes most decorated Winter Games athlete

February 19, 2014 23:52 IST

Ole Einar Bjoerndalen earned his 13th Olympic medal on Wednesday to become the most decorated Winter Games athlete when Norway won gold in the biathlon mixed relay.

Bjoerndalen, 40, beat the previous record he shared with compatriot and cross-country skier Bjorn Daehlie.

Bjoerndalen, who also has 19 world championship titles to his name, won his first medal at the Nagano Games in 1998 and has claimed at least two medals at every Olympics since then.

He also won the 10km sprint gold in Sochi.

Bjoerndalen, who started in the World Cup 20 years ago, was one of three members of the Norway relay to shoot clean in another dominant performance.

He had come close to winning his 13th medal in the 20km individual last week but had to settle for fourth. He dropped out of contention in Tuesday's mass start when he made four mistakes in the final shooting.

Image: Ole Einar Bjoerndalen

Photograph: Harry How/Getty Images