Latuilliere and Loginov Win Last IBU Cup Sprints
France’s Enora Latuilliere despite one penalty won the women’s sprint at IBU Cup 8 in 23:17.4. Later in the day, Alexander Loginov of Russia won the men’s sprint with two penalties in 28:00.9.
Latuilliere's teammate Julia Simon shot clean to finish second, 4.3 seconds back. Anna Nikulina of Russia hit 10-of-10 to take the last place on the podium, securing first place in the IBU Cup Sprint Score, 13.4 seconds behind.
Germany’s Anna Weidel finished fourth, 18 seconds back. Ekaterina Moshkova of Russia finished fifth, 23.8 seconds behind, while another German Karolin Horchler finished sixth, 24.6 seconds back. All three shot clean.
Early Start Number
The last sprint day of the season started with the women’s competition under the grey skies and light wind at the shooting range. An early start number became an advantage for Latuilliere, who became the leader after prone. In standing, she missed once and left the stadium in second, 3.7 seconds behind bib 4 Simon. By the next split she reduced that gap, moving up to first and keeping it until the finish. In the last lap, Nikulina left in fourth, sharing the place with Weidel. With a strong final leg she overcame her rival, taking third place. After the flower ceremony she was also awarded with the small Crystal Globe for the Sprint Score.
Latuilliere was very happy to win the last individual competition. “It is a great feeling to be first today. It was hard season for me, especially at the shooting range, so it is great to finish a year with a win and it surely gives me motivation for the next season. I think that my early start number was an advantage today, because at the end of the race the track was slower.”
Norway’s Henrik L’Abee-Lund, with one penalty finish second, 14.3 seconds back. Martin Jaeger of Switzerland finished third with two penalties, taking his first career podium, 21.2 seconds behind.
Fredrik Gjesbakk of Norway finished fourth, 27.7 seconds back. Two Russians Yury Shopin and Timur Makhambetov finished fifth and sixth, 30.6 and 36.8 seconds behind, respectively. All three shot clean.
The final individual competition of the season featured the same cloudy weather with a light wind at the range as the women had. Loginov with bib 3 missed once in prone, leaving after the shooting range only in 12th place. In standing he went for one more penalty loop, but despite that left the stadium in third, 1.9 behind clean-shooting Gjesbakk. By the finish line he not only reduced the gap, but increased the lead over his more accurate rivals. After the standing, where he had a penalty, L’Abee-Lund was second, just .3 seconds ahead of Loginov, and managed to keep that position until the finish. Ex cross-country skier Jaeger shot clean in the first prone, leaving the stadium in the lead. In standing he missed twice and was 8th with a 9.7 second gap from first. With a fast final lap, he overcame his rivals, taking the podium spot.
Jaeger was one happy and smiley guy. “I am super happy about my first podium place, but not completely happy with my shooting. Right after the second stage there was my coach on the track, he told me that the gap was not so big, so I knew it could be possible. I started with biathlon just three years ago, so I do have some problems with the shooting.” This podium place was special for one more reason, “Today it was the last individual race at the IBU Cup for our coach Christian Stebler. I want to thank him for all this years and really happy to give this third place as to our Head Coach.”
After the flower ceremony, the winner of the IBU Cup Total and Sprint Scores Alexey Volkov of Russia was awarded with the big and small Globes.