ANTHOLZ-ANTERSELVA, Italy (January 20, 2013) - Team USA posted a season-best 10th place finish in the women's 4x6-kilometer relay today. The squad (Annelies Cook (Saranac Lake, NY), Susan Dunklee (Barton, VT), Sara Studebaker (Boise, ID), and Hannah Dreissigacker (Morrisville, VT)) posted a time of 1:17:45.2 (0+6+1+8) to place 10th, +4:43.1 back from Team Germany (Hildebrand, Gossner, Horchler and Henkel), winning with a time of 1:13:02 (0+7+0+3). Team Russia (Glazyrina, Zaitseva, Shumilova and Vilukhina) finished second (1:13:19.5/0+3+0+6), and Team France (Bescond, Boilley, Brunet and Dorin Habert) took third with a time of 1:13:43.0/0+0+0+4.
Studebaker led Team USA with an outstanding performance, shooting 10 for 10 at the range and and skiing strong. "Today was a solid day for me," said Studebaker. I was really happy to end the trimester on a good note. I had some good people to ski around and it definitely felt nice to shoot so well. I think today was really indicative of our team's potential - we had our best team result of the year with some less-than-perfect legs, so we're all excited to see what we can do when we all put together good days. It definitely gives us momentum going into World Champs!"
Extended results from the women's 4x6 relay are available here.
Team USA's men (Lowell Bailey (Lake Plaid, NY), Tim Burke (Paul Smiths, NY), Russell Currier (Stockholm, ME) and Leif Nordgren (Marine, MN)) finished 12th in today's 4x7.5-kilometer relay with a time of 1:16:47.3 (0+4+2+9).
Bailey had a great lead off leg today and tagged the team off in 6th place, but Currier had a very impressive leg, using two extra rounds in prone and cleaning standing in just five shots. "The race was up and down today," said Bailey."I felt good on the skis and the race was going well until standing when I missed three with my clip. You never want to give yourself three shots to hit the last three targets but that was the case today. I was able to hit all of the remaining targets and get out on the course within contact with the leaders. I was happy with the last lap and felt strong through the finish."
Team France (S. Fourcade, Beatrix, Boeuf and M. Fourcade) had a strong performance today posting 1:13:26 (0+2+0+6) to win the relay. Team Russia (Shipulin, Ustyugov, Garanichev and Malyshko) finished 10.1 seconds back, with a time of 1:13:36.1 (0+2+0+6) for second, and Team Austria (Eder, Sumann, Mesotitsch, Landertinger) finished third, posting 1:14:44.5 (0+1+1+7).
Extended results from the men's relay are available here.
Team USA will travel to Nove Mesto, CZE for the IBU World Championships Biathlon which opens with the mixed relay on February 7th. A complete schedule for World Championships can be found here.