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RODRIGUEZ IS GOLDEN IN SPEEDSKATING OPENER

Jennifer Rodriguez (left) of the United States won the 1,500-meter event, and Gianni Romme of the Netherlands captured the men's 5,000 at the season-opening World Cup speedskating meet in Hamar, Norway.

Rodriguez held off Canada's Cindy Klassen by 0.33 seconds, winning in 1 minute, 57.02 seconds in the Viking Ship, built for the 1994 Olympics. Klassen, the 2003 world all-around champion, made her comeback in this meet after injuring her arm during training and missing last season.

Chiara Simionato of Italy placed third in 1:57.84. Catherine Raney of the United States was 16th in 2:00.51.

Canada edged the United States by 0.20 seconds to win the women's 4,400-meter team pursuit, a new World Cup event this season. The Canadian threesome was timed in 3:05.45.

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