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March 14, 2010

Cross-Country Skiing: Bourgonje wins Canada's first medal

Vancouver (AFP) - Cross-country skier Colette Bourgonje on Sunday won Canada's first medal of the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games when she finished second in the 10km (sitting) event.

The 48-year-old from Saskatoon finished in a time of 31min 49.8sec to add to the bronze she collected over the same distance in Torino in 2006.

It was her ninth Paralympic medal having won five winter medals as well as four at the summer Games.

Belarus competitor Liudmila Vauchok took gold in 30min 52.9sec with Olena Iurkovska of Ukraine claiming bronze in 32min 43.5sec.

"I felt very strong today, the skis were quick. I am happy and proud to be representing Canada," said Bourgonje, who was badly-injured in a 1980 car accident.

Bourgonje's next event will be the 5km event on March 18.

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