Swedish skiers Teodor Peterson and Emil Jönsson took silver and bronze respectively in the race on Tuesday afternoon.
The winner was Norwegian Ola Vigen Hattestad, who crossed the line in 3min 38.39sec with Petersen finishing 1:22sec behind, after the pair moved easily ahead of their rivals when three skiers crashed going round a steep right-hand bend.
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Jönsson, who avoided the worst of the carnage, came in third for bronze and was so exhausted he had to be helped to his feet by medical staff.
The crash destroyed the hopes of Anders Gloeersen of Norway, Marcus Hellner of Sweden and home favourite Russian Sergey Ustiugov, to the bitter
disappointment of the capacity crowd at the Laura cross country ski centre.
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The success brings Sweden's silver medal count to three, and marks the troupe's first bronze medal.