Burke 9th and Bailey 11th in Khanty-Mansiysk World Cup Sprint

March 15, 2013, 6:42 p.m. (ET)

Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia (March 15, 2013) - Posting two Top-15 finishes, Team USA's men had a strong World Cup opening in the 10-kilometer sprint in Khanty-Mansiysk today. Tim Burke (Paul Smiths, NY) had the top finish at 9th today, posting a time of 25:26.3 with one penalty. Lowell Bailey (Lake Placid, NY) shot clean in both stages and crossed the finish at 25:28.3 for 11th place. World Cup Leader Martin Fourcade (FRA) notched another sprint win today with a time of 24:22.6 and clean shooting. Lukas Hofer (ITA) took second (25:02.2/+0), and Andreas Birnbacher (GER) finished third (25:06.4/+0).

"Today was a great day for our team and we are thrilled to move back into 10th place for the Nations Cup rankings," said Burke. "This guarantees us five start spots for next season! Personally, I am happy with my 9th place. Most importantly, I am only about 20 seconds out of second place for tomorrow's pursuit, so it should be a very exciting race."   

“I was happy to be back up near the front today,” said Bailey. “It actually turned out to be a little warmer than I expected, which was nice. I like being able to have a little feeling left in my hands for shooting!  I’m looking forward to a tight pursuit tomorrow!”

Russell Currier (Stockholm, ME) shot clean and finished 43rd with a time of 26:34.3. Leif Nordgren (Marine, MN) was 53rd (26:53.0/+3). Full results from today's 10k sprint are available here.

All four men from Team USA have qualified to race in tomorrow's 12.5k pursuit beginning at 8:30am (ET). Susan Dunklee (Barton, VT) and Annelies Cook (Saranac Lake, NY) will race for Team USA in Saturday's 10k pursuit, beginning at 6:30am (ET). Both races will be webcast live at  www.biathlonworld.com