Tannheimer and Kalkenberg take Youth Sprint Gold

Julia Tannheimer and Kasper Kalkenberg are the new Youth World Champions in the Sprint - the two 17-year-olds delivered the fastest time on skis to off-set their misses at the windy shooting range in Shchuchinsk.

Joy for Julia²

17-year-old Julia Tannheimer crowned herself World Champion in the Youth Women Sprint with an irresistible performance on the Shchuchinsk tracks - capping it off a perfect day for the German team, Julia Kink secured silver with one miss in the prone shooting. Bronze went to Italy's Astrid Plosch who was the only athlete to keep a clean sheet at the windy shooting range today.

"It feels really really cool - of course, with the team, it's fantastic but I really wanted to have a medal in an individual race, so it's really nice and the best part about today is that my roommate Julia (Kink) was also really good!" (Julia Tannheimer)

Tannheimer set the pace in every single of the 2km loops in Shchuchinsk and ended up being 30 seconds faster than everyone else in skiing time alone, overcoming two misses at the range. Sweden's Elsa Tanglander posted the second-fastest time but two misses in the standing shooting saw her gold chances vanish.

Individual Youth Champion Julia Kink recovered from one miss in the prone to claim the silver medal behind her teammate - for Kink this is already the fourth medal in four competitions.

A real battle ensued in the fight for the third place with clean-shooting Astrid Plosch hanging on to bronze. The Italian's 15-second-advantage over Tanglander after the standing shooting melted to a mere 0.5-second-lead as she crossed the finish line.

Kalkenberg powers through the tracks

Starting in the middle of the field, Norway's Kasper Kalkenberg had almost buried his aspirations for a podium position after missing twice in the prone position. The Norwegian steadied himself in the standing, missing only one target and was able to rely on his supreme ski speed to carry him through the final loop. Kalkenberg gained 10 seconds on silver medallist Legovic on the last 700 meters alone.

"When I came into the first shooting, I missed two, so I didn't think a top race would be possible today." (Kasper Kalkenberg)

For Legovic, the sprint silver is his second medal at the Youth Junior World Championships. The Croat navigated his way through windy conditions with only 2 misses and consistently performed in 3rd or 4th spot in ski time across the three 2.5km loops.

In the Norwegian Sivert-battle for bronze, Gerhardsen managed to narrowly edge out Rusten by 0.4 seconds. Germany's Albert Engelmann matched gold medalist Kalkenberg in accuracy (7/10) and ski speed (+2.8 seconds) but spent 18 seconds longer on the standing shooting, costing him a potential medal in a competition of slim margins. The Top 18 men will be starting within a minute of each other in Sunday's pursuit.

Pictures: Yevenko/IBU

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