Canadian Alex Harvey sits 19th after two events at Tour de Ski

TOBLACH, Italy — Canada's Alex Harvey finished 14th in the second stage of the seven-race Tour de Ski on Sunday, bouncing back from a 50th-place showing the day before to sit 19th overall.

Harvey, of St-Ferreol-les-Neiges, Que., clocked a time of 31 minutes 27.0 seconds in the men's 15-kilometre individual cross-country race at the Toblach Nordic Arena, finishing in a tie with Maurice Manificat of France for 14th.

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They are 52.9 seconds behind the leading pace.

"I think it is a step in the right direction today," Harvey said. "The result is good, the body is feeling decent too and that is positive for a distance race.

"I was looking for a bit better, but I am really happy with that last lap. I emptied the tank and gained about six spots so that was good. I need to make sure I'm a bit further up the ranking (heading into the final lap) so I'm able to fight for the top-five or 10."

Russia's Sergey Ustiugov won the second stage with a time of 30:34.1. Norway's Simen Hegstad Krueger finished 12 seconds back in second and Russia's Alexander Bolshunov rounded out the men's podium in third.

Harvey was third overall in the Tour de Ski last year.

"I was hoping to be a bit further up the rankings right now, but that's where I'm at and it is trending in the right direction," he said. "Recovery is key in a stage event. I just have to make sure I continue to eat well, change the clothes quickly, get therapy and massage, go for light jogs at night and flush the legs.

"There is nothing special that is needed, but it is important to do all the little things right."

Toronto's Len Valjas skied to 70th (33:02.5), while Tour rookie Bob Thompson of Thunder Bay, Ont., was 83rd (33:57.1).

In the women's 10-kilometre race, Emily Nishikawa of Whitehorse finished 35th with a time of 25:04.5.

"I was focused on skiing smooth and powerful today," she said. "I maybe could have paced it a bit better, but I'm happy with the effort I gave."

Dahria Beatty, also from Whitehorse, was 56th.

Russia's Natalia Nepryaeva set the time to beat at 23:19.9. Norway's Ingvild Flugstad Oestberg was second and Russia's Anastasia Sedova was third.

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