2022-2023 First Trimester Review

It’s hard to beleive that after so long counting down and waiting for the the season to start, we’re already 1/3 of the way done. I wanted to do a quick look at some of the great things that are happening in biathlon right now as well as take a look at where we are going this season. Maybe a few other things are coming but right now let’s take a look!

1. Breakthrough Seasons

It’s time for one my favorite exercises of the first trimester…celebrating biathletes in the midst of breakthrough seasons! There is almost nothing in biathlon that I love more than watching athletes reach new levels of success. Sometimes it is finally reaching potential that was seen in Juniors/IBU Cup. Sometimes it is the result of putting in a really hard summer to push to a new level. And sometimes it is the culmination of work that has been years and years in the making. For us as fans, each of these is so much fun to see!

Continue reading Breakthrough Seasons

2. National Pride

We’ve taken a look at a couple of men and women who have appear to be making breakthroughs this season. Maybe just a few more than a couple. Okay fine, we looked at 12 athletes having breakthrough seasons, 12 younger athletes who are showing good promise, and 6 more athletes who are just having good years. Yes, I admit it, I have a problem with cutting down. I talk way too much and I write way too much. The crazy thing is even though we covered 30 athletes I could make an argument for a dozen or more who should be added to that list!

Today we’re going to do a slightly different type of thing. We’re going to look at a handful of nations who are having really good years. In a few instances there are countries that are making some really impressive leaps forward. It doesn’t mean that they have anybody competing for the Overall Globe and it doesn’t mean that they will be making the podium in a relay this year. For a few teams out there though they are definitely doing something right and the results are showing. For example, if we had done this last season we would have led off with the Czech Republic and their women’s team. That’s the kind of thing we’re looking at here.

Continue Reading National Pride

3. Previewing the Men’s Overall Globe Race

Coming into this season it felt like the Men’s race could go in any direction. Quinton Fillon Maillet was dominant last season, was he going to claim a form of athletic revenge for Martin Fourcade who lost his title to JT Bø? Was Johannes Thingnes Bøcoming back to spread his wrath and reclaim his throne in dominant fashion? Would Sturla Holm Lægreid finally take the last step to the top of the podium after two seasons finishing 2nd overall? Or would there be a minor surprise coming from Vetle Sjaastad Christiansen, Emilien Jacquelin or somewhere else?

In the first two weeks in Kontiolahti and Hochfilzen the season had all the looks of 2019-2020. JT Bø skiing exceptionally fast and shooting better than at any time since that season when he had 10 wins in just 17 races and never finished worse than 10th. He came roaring out the gate and winning four of the first five races. Flying under the radar the whole time was Sturla Holm Lægreid.

Continue Reading Previewing Men’s Overall Race

4. Previewing the Women’s Overall Globe Race

As we enter trimester #2 of the World Cup season, we come what has traditionally been a turning point in the season. This is when the contenders start to separate from the pack. Almost every year it is the January swing that provides some critical results and cleaves off usually all but 3-4 women still vying for the Overall Crystal Globe. There is just something about the German swing and Antholz (well usually those stops) that has a knack for identifying the best of the year.

Last season Røiseland’s had three wins and a 2nd place in Oberhof and Ruhpolding to pull away from Elvira Öberg. The year before saw Eckhoff win three straight races to dramatically close the gap on Røiseland and set up her run for the title. In 2019-2020 it was the 2nd trimester during which Eckhoff and eventually champion Wierer pulled away the large pack of competitors. If we keep going back we find that nearly every year the winner is usually within the top 3 at the end of trimester #2.

Continue reading Preview Women’s Overall Race

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