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Two Olympic ski jumpers injured in training falls

KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia -- Gold medalist Kamil Stoch of Poland and Russian ski jumper Mikhail Maksimochkin both crashed during landings Wednesday night while training for the individual large hill event at the Sochi Olympics.

 Stoch, who won gold in the normal hill event on Sunday, was the last jumper of the night when he fell and was attended to by medical staff. He walked off the hill after having a brace put onto his left arm.

Paramedics earlier immobilized Maksimochkin with a neck and back brace and strapped him down on a stretcher before taking him away. The Russian was taken from the RusSki Gorki Jumping Center in an ambulance escorted by a police car.

Officials later quoted governing body FIS as saying that  Maksimochkin had not suffered any serious injuries, but had no further details.

Maksimochkin attempted to stand up after falling, his skis separated by at least 10 meters. He then collapsed on the icy landing area, and medical officials rushed to his aid.

The incident came after high winds delayed the start of the first round of training and forced the cancellation of a third round.

 The training jumps continued after Maksimochkin was taken from the hill. He was the 37th of 70 scheduled jumpers in the round.

Among those jumping Wednesday was Thomas Morgenstern of Austria. The three-time Olympic champion was hospitalized with skull and lung injuries after a training crash on Jan. 10, four weeks after suffering facial cuts, bruises and a broken finger following a bad landing during a World Cup event.

Simon Amman of Switzerland, the defending champion from Vancouver, was among those in the field. Also jumping were normal hill silver medalist Peter Prevc of Slovenia and Anders Bardal of Norway, who earned bronze.

Severin Freund of Germany led the first training round, while Stoch and Prevc were fourth and fifth. Prevc led the second round, jumping immediately before Stoch had his accident.

The gold medal in the large hill will be awarded Saturday night.

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