“Hungry” for the win
The winner was beyond pleased with his third career win after two second place finishes earlier in the season. “To be honest, it is so amazing. I am so happy, I have been enjoying racing this year but for sure have been struggling a bit to put together the perfect race and deliver when it counts. So, to get this victory today…I was so hungry for that.”
“Fight for the podium”
Dale-Skjevdal thought he could win despite being matched so closely with four other talented rivals. “Of course (I thought I could win). I saw the two in front of me and knew we had a chance. I did not know how many cleaned the last shooting, five or six maybe. Then I knew it would be a fight for the podium. I knew my finishes are quite strong but to be this strong, I did not know. So, I was very happy when I heard there was a gap to Vetle and Johannes. That added fuel to my fire!”
Christiansen, with three penalties on the day, in the lead after the last standing stage finished second, 1.7 seconds back. JT, with two penalties, after moving up from ninth at the start, finished third, 2.4 seconds back.
The men lined up for the final Ruhpolding competition under the same perfect conditions as the women enjoyed. Christiansen went out hard on the first loop, coming to the first prone stage alone and cleaning before anyone else fired a shot. Déjà vu for the sprint winner in the second prone; Tarjei and Dale-Skjevdal matched, trailing by 22 seconds.
Christiansen and Tarjei missed a shot in the first standing, staying 1-2 while Dale-Skjevdal fell to fifth after two penalties. Christiansen and Tarjei both missed two shots in the last standing stage, opening the door with JT, Strelow, Dale-Skjevdal and Jacquelin following within 3 seconds back,
JT led at 11.2 km; Dale-Skjevdal passed him at 11.8 km. JT responded momentarily but Dale-Skjevdal dug deep, pulling away for the victory. Christiansen nipped JT for second, giving Norway the podium sweep.
France’s Emilien Jacquelin, with three penalties finished fourth for the second consecutive day, 9.6 seconds back. Germany’s Justus Strelow, with one penalty finished fifth, 14.7 seconds back. Italy’s Tommaso Giacomel with four penalties, finished sixth, 24.1 seconds back.
Photos: IBU/ Jaroslav Svoboda, Nordic Focus