ANTHOLZ-ANTERSELVA, Italy (January 16, 2014) – With perfect shooting and a time of 20:40.9, Susan Dunklee (Barton, VT) finished 4th in today's 7.5-kilometer sprint at World Cup 6 in Antholz, Italy. A personal best for Dunklee, just three weeks before the 2014 Sochi Olympic Winter Games, today’s result marked the third time a US female biathlete has finished in the top-4 at a World Cup.
Dunklee finished just 10 seconds back from Anais Bescond (FRA) winning with a rime of 20:30.2/+1, 4 seconds back from Germany’s Andrea Henkel in second (20:36.9/+0), and 0.6 seconds behind Darya Domracheva (BLR) posting 20:40.3/+2.
“This morning I went in to the race feeling very relaxed and confident that the pieces have been coming together during practice. Today they came together on the same day,” said Dunklee. “After the standing shooting, I realized I was fighting for a spot on the podium. The coaches and staff were out there yelling and excited, and I just tried to push as hard as I could.
Being half a second off the podium is extremely motivating, and I know I can be there. That’s a huge confidence booster. I’m really happy to have such a great team of coaches and staff who put everything together for us in such a professional way that make these sort of opportunities possible," she added.
“This venue is not an easy one. Susan approached it very aggressively and wanted to go for a great result from the beginning of the race,” said Bernd Eisenbichler, US Biathlon High Performance Director. “Susan’s performance today was big for the whole women’s team because it gives them a boost of confidence coupled with their strong relay performances this season.”
Sara Studebaker (Boise, ID) finished 57th (22:32.5/+2), Annelies Cook (Saranac Lake, NY) 70th (22:50.5/+3). Hannah Dreissigacker (Morrisville, VT) did not finish. Extended results from today’s race are available here.
Dunklee and Studebaker will compete in the 10km pursuit on Saturday, beginning at 5:45am (ET). Watch the race live here.