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Cross-country skiing isn’t as boring as you think it is. This photo finish proves it.

Sophie Caldwell, right, of the United States and Switzerland’s Laurien Van Der Graaff celebrate their first-place tie together on the podium after the Seefeld World Cup Cross-Country Ladies’ 10 km competition in Seefeld, Austria on Saturday. (Kerstin Joensson/Associated Press)

Who said cross-country skiing is boring? Oh, a lot of people have?

Well, maybe Saturday’s photo finish at a World Cup competition involving the United States’ Sophie Caldwell and Switzerland’s Laurien Van Der Graaff will convince those naysayers otherwise.

Competing in the FIS women’s freestyle sprint final in Seefeld, Austria, Caldwell and Van Der Graaff lunged their skis toward the finish line at the end of the 1.1-kilometer race, but it was too close to determine a winner after the pair finished within one-hundredth of a second of the each other. Both were awarded first place, while Norway’s Maiken Caspersen Falla finished 0.21 seconds behind in third place.

“This was a crazy day,” Caldwell said, via to the International Ski Federation. “At first I was second in the finish and then 10 minutes later I learn that I have won the race in a tie with Laurien. I like this style of course and after my qualifier today I knew I could ski well. To get my second career win just before the Olympics gives me a lot of confidence heading into the Games.”

“It’s so great to win again,” Van Der Graaf said. “I have told myself to believe that it was possible and now I have two wins this season. I didn’t realize Sophie was so close at the finish. It’s kind of fun to share the podium with her. I have never heard of that happening before.”

Caldwell’s victory gives the United States its first cross-country skiing World Cup victory of the season, per NBC Sports. It also gives Team USA a boost as it heads into the Winter Olympics next month in PyeongChang, where the U.S. hopes to win its first cross-country skiing medal since 1976.

The Games will feature men’s and women’s competitions across six cross-country skiing events: the individual sprint, team sprint, individual start, mass start, relay and skiathlon. The distances range from 1.2-kilometers (women’s sprint) up to 50-kilometers (men’s mass start) and feature two types of techniques: classic and freestyle. Classic style requires the skier to stride forward while moving ones arms and legs in opposition, and freestyle has the heels and toes secured to the skis and allows the athlete to stride from side-to-side like a speed skater.

The first cross-country skiing event to kick off the Games will be the Women’s 7.5 km + 7.5 km skiathlon on Saturday, February 10.

(H/T NBC Sports)

Read more on the Winter Olympics:

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