History made as Germany'y Laura Dahlmeier does the sprint-pursuit biathlon double

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Slovakian Anastasia Kuzmina won the silver medal, coming in 29.4 seconds behind Dahlmeier.

Kuzmina produced the race of her life, but her German rival's accurate shooting and power in the finishing stages were just too much.

Already France's most decorated winter Olympian prior to the race, Fourcade brought his tally to five medals overall including three golds.

"It feels really great, it's unbelievable". I felt really, really exhausted before the race and also during the race in the first laps. "I just tried to stay focused and now I'm here again", said an ecstatic Dahlmeier.

By winning the women's 7.5km sprint, Laura Dahlmeier was awarded a 24-second head start in Monday's 10km pursuit.

With that tally of golds he joins alpine skier Jean-Claude Killy on three Olympic titles, a French all-time record. Laura Dahlmeier claimed champion in a time of 30:35.3.

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Dahlmeier made the most of it, speeding away from her rival to open up an unassailable lead, stopping only to fire off a final salvo of five flawless shots before cruising to victory.

"I'm very satisfied because it was a big disappointment yesterday for me, you know", said Fourcade.

Samuelsson and Doll fought it out for the silver medal and the 20-year-old Swede powered past the German as they approached the ski stadium for the final time before holding on for second place, 12 seconds behind the victor. Kuzmina won the silver despite missing four of her shots.

"For me it was that he had some metres (on me) after the shooting and I knew I had really good skis today, so I knew if I could catch him at the top I would have a good chance", Samuelsson said.

"It was really a odd feeling - I wasn't frustrated, I was disappointed".

Meanwhile, bronze medallist Bescond acknowledged that Dahlmeier had raised the bar to new levels for her fellow biathletes this season.