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20-for-20 with Benita Peiffer

In an effort to showcase the North Americans competing at this week’s International Biathlon Union (IBU) 2018 Youth and Junior World Championships in Otepää, Estonia, we asked those qualifying athletes several questions about themselves — actually, we had them fill in the blanks. Here we have 17-year-old Benita Peiffer, of Whistler, British Columbia, who is representing Canada at her first World Youth Championships. Today in Otepää, Peiffer finished 11th in the youth women’s 10 k...

Wednesday Rundown: Masters World Cup; Open European Champs

2018 Masters World Cup (Minneapolis, Minnesota): 4 x 5 k relays Matt Liebsch, 34, anchored the winning relay of the youngest men’s age group (AG 1) at 2018 Masters World Cup on Wednesday, crossing the line in 45:57.2 minutes (the fastest relay time of the day) and teaming up with fellow Americans Christopher Harvey, Mark Johnson and Zach Varty. Two teams competed in that age group’s 4 x 5 k relay, with Italy finishing second,...

With ‘Biathlon Family’ Behind Her, Crawford Third in Ruhpolding 15 k

For a while it looked as if the podium in the women’s 15-kilometer individual at the Thursday’s IBU World Cup in Ruhpolding, Germany, had been all but decided with only a few more athletes circling the course. But then the favorites who had already finished had someone to worry about. Along with some 13,000 spectators in the stands, they paid close attention to the video walls in the arena, as one late-starting Canadian — Rosanna Crawford...

Thursday Rundown: Crawford Third in Ruhpolding

IBU World Cup (Ruhpolding, Germany): Women’s 15 k individual  IBU Cup women’s 15 k individual, also on Thursday. “That spark is exactly what our team needs right now and the timing is spot on,” Dunklee continued. “We will field our first women’s relay this weekend.  It has been a challenging season so far living and traveling with such a small crew, trying to stay upbeat and carry the team with a skeleton group.” The World Cup...

Fourcade Stares Down Norwegian Rivals in Oberhof Pursuit; Burke 14th, C. Gow Ties Career-Best 21st

After cleaning the fourth and final shooting stage in the men’s 12.5-kilometer pursuit on Saturday at the 2018 International Biathlon Union (IBU) World Cup in Oberhof, Germany, Martin Fourcade of France hoisted the biathlon rifle onto his back, spun around and fully faced the way he’d come, glancing for a moment at his three closest competitors behind him: Norwegians Johannes Thingnes Bø and his older brother Tarjei Bø, and Emil Hegle Svendsen, before heading out on...

Ransom Ninth, Beaudry 23rd as Kuzmina Smashes Another Sprint in Oberhof

For athletes who finished 2017 on a high note, the first race of 2018 can be a couple of two things. One is a continuation of the good competitions right like they left off. Another is a downgrade leaving them wondering if they’ve lost their mojo. For some women in Thursday’s 7.5 k World Cup sprint in Oberhof, Germany, it was the former. Anastasiya Kuzmina of Slovakia started in the yellow bib denoting the leader...

Biathlon Canada’s Olympic Team: Who’s (Most Likely) In and How They Qualified

Two hundred and thirty biathletes, 115 men and 115 women, will earn the right to be called a 2018 Olympian — 10 of whom will be Canadian. The top-six teams in last season’s International Biathlon Union’s (IBU) final Nation’s Cup ranking can bring a full team of six men and six women to the Games. Canada’s men’s finished ranked 13th while the women ranked 15th, so each squad can bring five athletes. this document detailing...

Saturday Rundown: Annecy, Toblach, St. Ulrich, Rossland (Updated)

NorAm Mini Tour (Rossland, B.C.): Freestyle sprints On Day 2 of NorAm racing in Rossland, British Columbia, Julien Locke, of the Black Jack Ski Club and Canadian National U25 Team, won the men’s 1.4-kilometer freestyle sprint final on his home trails by just one-hundredth of a second over Evan Palmer-Charrette, of the National Team Development Centre (NTDC) Thunder Bay, in 2:38.13. NTDC Thunder Bay had two on the podium with Julian Smith in third, 0.4...

Friday Rundown: Annecy, St. Ulrich, Rossland (Updated)

IBU World Cup (Annecy, France): Men’s 10 k sprint (Note: This rundown has been updated to include quotes from US Biathlon’s Tim Burke and Sean Doherty.) Norway’s Johannes Thingnes Bø racked up his third-straight individual win of the International Biathlon Union (IBU) World Cup season on Friday (and fourth non-relay win of 2017/2018), topping the men’s 10-kilometer sprint in Annecy, France. And he did so in head-turning fashion, beating French superstar Martin Fourcade, the race’s...

Biathlon Canada to Boycott Russian World Cups

On Dec. 10, the International Biathlon Union (IBU) Russia’s participation at the 2018 Winter Games. Despite the RBU’s less-than-full IBU member status, Russia is still scheduled to host the final IBU World Cup races of the season from March 20-25 in Tyumen and the IBU Cup 7 & 8 in Uvat and Khanty-Mansiysk. In an open letter sent to IBU President Anders Besseberg and IBU Secretary General Nicole Resch dated Dec. 8, 2017, Biathlon Canada’s President...

Nordic Nation: Biathlon Canada President Murray Wylie on Boycotting Russia

this more in-depth article on the open letter for some detailed context before listening to this podcast episode. Here’s some of the key info from that piece: On Dec. 10,Russia’s participation at the 2018 Winter Games. Despite the RBU’s less-than-full IBU member status, Russia is still scheduled to host the final IBU World Cup races of the season from March 20-25 in Tyumen and IBU Cup 7 & 8 in Uvat and Khanty-Mansiysk. In an...

Emma Lunder may be aclose to zero visibility in the sprint, in the women’s 10-kilometer pursuit in Hochfilzen, Austria. Despite having started more than two dozen World Cups since the 2013/2014 season, this was only her third pursuit. “I went into this race knowing that both snow and wind were expected, so I anticipated conditions similar to yesterday’s sprint,” Lunder, who had previously raced to 42nd in the sprint with 9-for-10 shooting, wrote in an...

Domracheva Conquers Hochfilzen Blizzard; JT Bø on a Roll; Smith 19th; Doherty 22nd

Note: This article has been updated to include comments from Biathlon Canada’s Nathan Smith and Emma Lunder. Calm wind and a light drizzle for the men’s International Biathlon Union (IBU) World Cup sprint on Friday afternoon in Hochfilzen, Austria, turned into a full-blown blizzard for the women’s sprint that followed. One multiple-time Olympic and world champion weathered the elements best, as Darya Domracheva of Belarus won the latter with clean shooting. She was one of...

Herrmann Rises to First IBU World Cup Win; Ransom 29th in Östersund

Just over a year and half ago, Germany’s Denise Herrmann took a giant leap and diverged from her career as a World Cup cross-country skier to stated at the time. “The switch to a new discipline will be a big challenge, I am aware of that, but I am confident that I can do it with diligence, courage, and determination!” After bouncing between the International Biathlon Union (IBU) Cup and IBU World Cup last season,...

A New Season for Biathlon Canada: Ransom Rockets to Career-Best Ninth

Entering this season, members of Biathlon Canada had everything to gain and not a whole lot to lose. They had already had theirprequalifying for Canada’s International Biathlon Union (IBU) World Cup Team for the first trimester of racing, Ransom, 24, jumped into the 2017/2018 season with the Sunday. Three days later on Wednesday, it was another ballgame. With little to lose in the women’s 15-kilometer individual in Östersund, Ransom raced to a career-best ninth, which...

Norway’s Mixed Relay Wins Again in Östersund; Canada 15th, U.S. 21st

Even the most renowned athletes and national teams in the mixed relay on Sunday afternoon admitted they had not yet found their perfect groove in Östersund, Sweden, on the opening day of the 2017/2018 International Biathlon Union (IBU) World Cup season. Nevertheless it still made for an exciting race, with four teams vying for the podium on the last lap. And in the finishing stretch, anchored by veteran Emil Hegle Svendsen, the same country prevailed...

Biathlon Canada Finalize World Cup Team Following Trials (Updated)

Note: This article has been updated to include comments and verification from Biathlon Canada High Performance Director Roddy Ward, and explain the modified shooting format used for Friday’s sprint. *** Almost exactly two weeks before Biathlon Canada sends the rest of its World Cup team to Europe for the first trimeter of International Biathlon Union (IBU) World Cup racing, the national team held trials this past Tuesday through Friday on snow in Canmore, Alberta. Three...

At 49, Richard Boruta Leaves a Biathlon Legacy

Few nordic ski racing and biathlon venues are as awe-inspiring as the Canmore Nordic Centre in Alberta, Canada. Just south of the venue, amidst the geologic upheaval that is the Canadian Rockies, punches the Zina Kocher, a three-time Canadian Olympic biathlete, fostered a deep connection to Boruta as she emerged onto the Canadian biathlon radar. Kocher told FasterSkier on the phone that she qualified for the national championships in 12th grade at age 17. To...

OTP Cuts Biathlon Canada’s Base Funding to Zero

If you made it past the article’s title, then get ready to immerse yourself in the intricacies of Canadian high-performance sports funding. OK, here it goes…money, money, money. Add this for effect, $. Imagine for a moment you’re the CEO of a national sporting body and you’ve got high aspirations — things like championship and Olympic medals. There’s an infinite amount of puzzle pieces to organize and assemble. There are two critical pieces to even...

Juggling Two Roles, Ward Seeks an Olympic Biathlon Medal for Canada

When Biathlon Canada missed most of the season due to a rare virus. For Smith, the health issues have passed and Ward reported that he was back to training a full load. Crawford and Green, he concluded, were overtrained. The winter taught the team some painful lessons that they are learning from and he is confident that the athletes will be back to their prior form this year. “One thing as a team we have...