MEATBALLS! I have left the most delicious part of my Swedish theme until last and so did the Italians! Buon appetito!
Dorothea Wierer made history in Oestersund becoming the first Italian woman to win a World Championship title! She missed the women’s relay yesterday and took part in the Mass Start for points to help her in her quest for the Overall title. I don’t think she was expecting to win, but she did just that with a fabulous shooting performance, well up to the final standing anyway!
It was Hanna Oberg who started the best leading out of the first prone but she was quickly passed on the tracks by the on-form Denise Herrmann.
At the second prone it was Ekaterina Yurlova-Percht who left the range first but she was joined by five others who had all shot the perfect 10/10. They were Wierer, Franziska Preuss, Ingrid Tandrevold, Clare Egan and Iryna Kryuko.
All six came into the first stand together but it was Wierer who left on her own. She hit 5/5 very fast and the other five all missed targets to give the Italian a good lead.
At the final shoot Wierer missed 2 but was far enough ahead to complete her penalty loops and stay in front. Yurlova-Percht had 1 penalty as did Denise Herrmann and they had to settle for silver and bronze.
Hanna Oberg was 4th,Tiril Eckhoff 5th and Laura Dahlmeier 6th.
Joanne Reid in her first Mass Start had an amazing race finishing in 10th for her career best result.
Lisa Vittozzi missed 4 in the prone and was close to last place but then cleaned the stand to move back up to 8th place!! A result which leaves her and her teammate, roommate and friend Dorothea Wierer tied on points for the Overall title!!!
The men’s race was crazy! It was snowy and windy just like the women’s race. After the prone shoot Benedikt Doll took a small lead but with 18 out of 30 biathletes shooting clean most of the field were still in contention. People who did miss however were Dominik Windisch (1) and Antonin Guigonnat (2).
At the second prone Johannes Boe took over the lead with Doll missing but he was joined at the front by brother Tarjei, Arnd Peiffer, Dmytro Pidruchnyi, Julian Eberhard and Simon Desthieux.
The third shoot was a disaster for the leaders. Johannes missed 2, Desthieux 4, Tarjei 3, Eberhard 3, Peiffer 2 and Pidruchnyi 1. Evgeniy Garanichev hit all 5 and took the lead having hit all 15 targets up to then to take the lead. He was followed by Vetle Christiansen who did the same. Pidruchnyi was in third but was soon passed on the tracks by Johannes Boe and Bendikt Doll.
The final shoot was madness but one man came out a hero! Dominik Windisch hit all 5 having missed one on each shoot up to then to take the lead! Everyone else at the sharp end missed except Alexander Loginov. With just 1 miss Simon Eder moved into third and also with 1 miss each came Antonin Guigonnat and Julian Eberhard right behind him.
Guigonnat and Eberhard passed Eder on track but by this time Windisch was out front extending his lead and skied home for double Italian gold!!!
The fight was on for silver with Eberhard passing Guigonnat but the Frenchman came back and was too strong for the Austrian and claimed his first World Championship medal with Eberhard taking bronze.
Loginov was 4th, Quentin Fillon Maillet 5th and Arnd Peiffer 6th.
So that wraps up the World Championships which has been one of last shoot meltdowns!!! Norway topped the medal table with 9 medals, 5 of them gold to take home to the final World Cup in Oslo.
That is where the Women’s Overall will be decided with Wierer and Vittozzi battling it out for victory! Will it go down to the very last race again this season? Of course it will!!! 🙂
Follow biathlon23 on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!