BiathlonBiathlon CanadaJuniorsNewsRacingWednesday Rundown: Canada’s Grandbois Wins First Race of IBU Youth Worlds (Updated)

FasterSkier FasterSkierFebruary 22, 2017
The youth men’s 12.5 k individual podium after the first race of 2017 IBU Youth/Junior World Championships in Osrblie, Slovakia, with Canada’s Léo Grandbois in first (c), Russia’s Said Karimulla Khalili (l) in second, and Germany’s Danilo Riethmüller (r) in third. (Photo: IBU Junior Cup/Twitter)

IBU Youth/Junior World Championships (Osrblie, Slovakia): Youth individual races

Race report

In his first race of his first International Biathlon Union (IBU) Youth World Championships, Canada’s 17-year-old Léo Grandbois became a world champion.

Grandbois started ninth and raced to first in the youth men’s 12.5-kilometer individual on Wednesday, finishing in 32:56.6 minutes, a time that stood up as nearly a minute and 15 seconds faster than anyone else.

Out of 98 finishers, Grandbois was the only racer to hit all 20 targets in the four-stage race at the biathlon venue at Brezno-Osrblie, Slovakia. He had never cleaned a race before, and he did it in the longest-format race on the youth circuit.

“I am really happy, proud, surprised also,” he said in a post-race interview with the IBU Junior Cup media. “It’s the first time I cleaned a race so I’m really happy with this.”

He shared the podium with Russian silver medalist Said Karimulla Khalili, who finished 1:14.9 back with three penalties (1+0+1+1), and Germany’s Danilo Riethmüller in third (+1:21.5) with three penalties as well (2+1+0+0).

For Grandbois, who was born in Germany and raised in Quebec, his previous best international (non-relay) result was 22nd in the sprint at 2016 Youth Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway. There, he also placed 25th in the pursuit and 16th with the mixed relay.

In a email to FasterSkier late last week, he explained that he had been targeting the sprint.

“I want to thank first my coaches at home, my parents who always supported me and all the team who did a great job for the race, the skis, thank you,” he told the IBU Junior Cup media.

Also on Wednesday, American Vasek Cervenka, who trains with the Nove Mesto biathlon team, raced to 16th (+4:19.5) with five penalties (0+2+2+1). Also for the U.S., Jacob Pearson finished 49th (+7:45.3) with four misses (0+2+0+2), Alex Kilby 75th (+9:51.1) with five penalties (1+0+1+3), and Camren Nielsen 91st (+14:36.9) with 11 misses (3+4+2+2).

Canada’s Adam Runnalls finished 41st (+7:04.8) with eight penalties (1+2+4+1) and Thomas Hulsman was 57th (+8:19.0) with five misses (2+0+2+1).

[UPDATED] In the youth women’s 10 k individual that followed, American Chloe Levins recorded her best non-relay result at her third Youth Worlds, placing 14th with three penalties (1+1+1+0). She finished 3:05.6 minutes behind the winner, France’s Lou Jeanmonnot-Laurent, who shot 19-for-20 (0+1+0+0) and finished with the fastest time of 34:00.9.

Russia’s Kristina Egorova placed second, 52.4 seconds off the win, with identical shooting (0+1+0+0), and Sweden’s Elvira Karin Öberg notched bronze (+1:16.1) with two penalties (0+0+1+1).

Also for the U.S., Grace Gilliland finished 46th (+6:28.9) with four penalties (1+1+1+1), Amanda Kautzer was 53rd (+7:14.3) with eight misses (2+1+4+1), and Helen Wilson was 62nd (+9:00.5) with six penalties (1+2+2+1).

Canada’s Shilo Luca Rousseau finished 54th (+7:29.9) with five misses (2+0+1+2), Frédérique Pérusse was 77th (+11:54.6) with nine penalties (1+4+1+3), and Elise Sauve 78th (+12:07.1) with seven misses (2+2+2+1).

Results: Men | Women

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