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U.S. Biathlon

Holderness, NH Summer Biathlon Results

June 09, 2008, 12 a.m. (ET)
Many thanks to Kevin Brooker for sending the following results from Saturday's 
summer biathlon competition in Holderness, NH...

Today the Pemigiwasette F&G Club held the first biathlon of the '08 season.
Temps were mid 50 in the morning quickly rising to mid 90's during the race.
This was the hottest day in NH since August of last summer and quite a shock to
everyone involved. The Match race format was a mass start with 5 laps of 800
meters each. The 10 point range was fantastic. Last year the Pemi club received
an NRA grant to buy 10 of the Devin BT-200 practice targets. The targets were
set up on top of purpose built stands and a Pemi designed back ground was placed
behind the targets to help the athletes see the hits. The BT-200 is a over/under
offhand/prone door target. A hit is signaled by the door flapping open and
automatically reset. Spotters help the athlete record misses and spotting, while
not expected of competitors, was a job traded around.

There were 11 participants. 4 in Match class and 7 in the Novice class. There
were classes set-up for athletes 12 and under, 13-16, 17-21, 22-34, and 35+. In
the novice class the participants were expected to be safe and have a fun and
enjoyable introduction to biathlon. There is a walker class and lap lengths
ranging from 300 meters to the full 800. Novice shoots prone at the offhand
targets. Pemi has loaner rifles available. Novices can also receive coaching
during the race and help on the range if they feel they need it. With 11
participants everyone pretty much won their class.

In the 12U class, two athletes (ages 4 and 7) shot off a rest with adult
coaching. This was modeled after the kid races run by the Saratoga Biathlon
Club. The 7 year old went clean twice and had three misses total. The 4 year old
was all donuts but had a great time racing his sister around the P-loop they
used for their lap. He wanted to know when the next race is. Out of the 11
participants 8 were first timers. Two of the athletes in Match class were
experienced runners and shooters and this was the first time they tried
biathlon. The winning time in Match class was 28:02 with 2, 4, 2, 2 shooting.

This club puts in a huge effort to support biathlon. They construct a range,
P-loop, find volunteers (more helpers than athletes so far), supply water,
rifles, ammo, coaching and a very safe and fun environment. This race is part of
an 8 race series hosted between 2 clubs; Pemi and Harvard Sportsman's Club near
Boston. Its an interclub league open to anyone. There are 9 races between the
two clubs. Harvard just purchased 4 regulation resettable targets to put up
when they host events. A big investment for organizations that promote biathlon
as part of a summer shooting experience. The races are well run, safe and fun.
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