by Alain Chivilò
After several years in the Biathlon World Cup seasons, a little comment is in order after the first weekend in Oestersund, Sweden.
Italian Lisa Vittozzi is the athlete in charge to beat and one of the serious candidates to win the overall crystal globe. Hanna Öberg, Dorothea Wierer and Julia Simon, for example, still have a little bit to do. Among the men, Johannes Thingnes Bø is present, while his teammates and opponents still have a little something to sort out. Germany presented themselves very well, coming close to winning with Franziska Preuss, a compact team and a double for the men with Rees and Strelow. France, Sweden and Norway in ups and downs. Balance appears to be a common thread of the season. At the moment, between women and men, that frenetic pace in free technique for extreme recoveries in case of misses on the shooting range, as seen in some past seasons, does not appear. Consistency of performance could be one of the factors to keep in mind among male and female athletes. We are at the premiere and some new names have been seen.
Single Mixed Relay (M+W)
Sebastian Samuelsson and Hanna Oeberg with a total of 0+3 prone, 0+5 standing win in control over the Norway of Sturla Holm Laegreid and Juni Arnekleiv 0+3 and 0+3 but less effective in free technique and over the France of Fabien Claude and Julia Simon 1+4, 1+8 in a good performance considering the misses.
Mixed relay (M+W)
Quentin Fillon Maillet, Emilien Jacquelin, Justine Braisaz-Bouchet, Lou Jeanmonnot prone 0+2, standing 1+3 on Tarjei Boe, Johannes Thingnes Boe, Karoline Offigstad, Ingrid landmark Tandrevold 0+2, 0+5 on Didier Bionaz, Tommaso Giacomel, Dorothea Wierer, Lisa Vittozzi 0+5, 1+4. Valid performance by France against Norway and Italy with a few too many misses.
Women 15km Individual
A +0.1 allows Lisa Vittozzi to narrowly win over Franziska Preuss. 0/0/1/0 against 0/0/0/0 highlights Lisa’s form between skiing and precision. +10.0, third 0/0/0/0 Vanessa Voigt.
Men 20km Individual
The men’s Germany takes a one/two with Roman Rees 0/0/0/1 and Justus Strelow +12.1 – 0/1/0/0. Third Johannes Thingnes Boe +25.0 – 1/0/0/1 – still running in compared to the previous year.
©AC, NDSL, AM, Alain Chivilo