The first individual event of the 2017/18 season got underway on Wednesday with well… the Individual! The women raced first and in the the absence of Laura Dahlmeier (cold) and Gabi Koukalova (calf injury) there were podiums up for grabs!
We like the Individual because it is the one race when your skis can’t really get you out of trouble. You have to shoot well. That’s exactly what the winner did. In a very cold Oestersund (-11 degrees) Nadezhda Skardino shot 20/20 to win her first ever World Cup race. Not only that but she wore the coolest pair of gloves while doing it. Standard up to the fingers and then woolen! 🙂
Second place went to Norway’s Synnøve Solemdal. She also hit all the targets but finished 2.9 seconds behind Skardino. It was fantastic to see her on the podium after a tough few years last with illness. Third place went to Yuliia Dzhima who also shot clean but was 12 seconds behind the winner.
Valj Semerenko was 4th also hitting all 20 targets with Paulina Fialkova 5th and home favourite Mona Brorsson in 6th.
Canada’s Julia Ransom was 9th hitting all the targets to get her best ever finish on a World Cup. Linn Persson did the same in 15th for her personal best. Britain’s Amanda Lightfoot missed just one target on her way to her best ever World Cup finish in 31st.
Eleven women cleared all the targets in this race which is exceptional shooting from the ladies.
The men had slightly warmer conditions on Thursday with a balmy minus 5. The race was dominated by Johannes Boe who shot clean and fast to win the race by over 2 minutes. It was his speed and accuracy on the range that was particularly impressive. Quentin Fillon Maillet was second also hitting 20/20 but was a long way off Boe’s ski time.
Martin Fourcade was third missing 2 targets. He actually skied faster than Boe but even if he had hit 20/20 he wouldn’t have won. This is because he wasn’t fast enough on the range and lost a lot of time settling for his first shot.
Julian Eberhard was 4th with 1 miss, Anton Babikov was 5th with a perfect shoot and 6th place went to Lukas Hofer with 2 misses.
There were some really good performances today from the youngsters. Felix Leitner got his best World Cup result in 28th. Emilien Jacquelin finished 35th on his World Cup debut.
On his first World Cup start Latvia’s Oskars Muiznieks was 48th. His previous best was from the World Championships back in 2013 when he was 112th!
Six men shot the perfect 20/20 with Anton Pantov, Benjamin Weger and Jakov Fak hitting all the targets.
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