KHANTY-MANSIYSK, Russia (March 18, 2012) – Team USA wrapped a successful 2011-12 World Cup season today with the final Mass Start race of the season. Tim Burke (Paul Smiths, NY) led Team USA today with a 22nd place finish in the men’s 15K Mass Start. Posting a time of 45:41.2 (1+1+0+4), Burke finished 2:25.5 back from Emil Hegle Svendsen (NOR) winning the Mass Start with 43:15.7/0+1+0+1. Arnd Peiffer (GER) took 2nd (43:39.2/1+1+1+1) and Anton Shipulin (RUS) was 3rd (43:47.5/0+0+2+0).
“This was a very frustrating way to end the season,” said Burke. “I was fighting for a podium finish until the last shooting. I was incredibly unlucky during this stage with the wind, it was blowing harder than we have seen here all week. The others who I was shooting with at the time also struggled with 3 or 4 penalties. Unfortunately, this is part of biathlon.”
Lowell Bailey (Lake Placid, NY) finished 24th today with a time of 45:55.2 (3+0+1+0). “Today was a tough start,” said Bailey. “ I fell in the opening 200 meter and that really put me a ways back from the field right of the bat. Then I had 3 misses in the first prone which put me even further back. From then on, the race went better and I was able to claw my way back up to 24th.”
“Turns out that it was pretty important for me to get those extra World Cup points, he added. “I ended up squeaking ahead of Bjorn Ferry in the overall World Cup score to finish the season at 14th! I'm ready for a little break now but after that, I'm looking forward to another season starting in a few weeks!”
Complete results from the 15K Mass Start are available here.
Susan Dunklee (Barton, VT) closed her rookie World Cup season with a 28th place in today’s 12.5k Mass Start. Finishing with a time of 43:10.5 (0+2+1+4), 4:09.1 back from Darya Domracheva (BLR), winning today’s Mass Start posting 39:01.4 (1+0+0+2).Tora Berger (NOR) was 2nd (39:11.4/0+0+0+1), and Kaisa Makarainen (FIN) was 3rd (39:34.0/2+0+1+1).
“I had been hoping to finish my last race on a more spectacular note, but I am proud to have given it my best effort,” said Dunklee. “Today was a humbling reminder of how challenging the sport is.This season has been incredible and it's been wonderful to work with such a dedicated and talented staff. I've achieved far more than I dared to dream and I'm going home happy.”
Extended results from today’s 12.5k Mass Start are available here.
US Biathlon World Cup/World Championship 2011-12 Season Highlights
- Best ever finish at World Championships for a US woman - Susan Dunklee, 5th place (Women’s 15k Individual) in Ruhpolding, Germany
- 2nd place finish by Lanny Barnes (Durango, CO) in women’s 15k Individual at IBU Cup in Canmore, Alberta.
- 14 Top-10 finishes by 5 different US Biathlon athletes
- 7 Top-6 finishes
- US women moved from 15th to 11th in IBU Nation’s Cup standings
- US men moved from 12th to 9th in Nations Cup standings, earning one additional starting spot for the 2012-13 season (new total of 5 spots)
- 2 men in Top-20 Overall World Cup standings (Bailey 14th, Burke 20th)