Team USA readies for IBU World Championships

March 03, 2015, 12:43 p.m. (ET)

KONTIOLAHTI, Finland (March 3, 2015) – Following a two-week training camp, Team USA has arrived in Kontiolahti, Finland, in preparation for the start of the 2015 IBU World Championships, which begin on Thursday with the mixed relay.  The U.S. squad, featuring seven Olympians, consists of Annelies Cook (Saranac Lake, N.Y.), Hannah Dreissigacker (Morrisville, Vt.), Susan Dunklee (Barton, Vt.) and Clare Egan (Cape Elizabeth, Maine) on the women’s team, and Lowell Bailey (Lake Placid, N.Y.), Tim Burke (Paul Smiths, N.Y.), Sean Doherty (Center Conway, N.H.) and Leif Nordgren (Marine, Minn.) on the men’s side.

At the conclusion of the most recent World Cup in Oslo, Norway, on Feb. 15, Team USA headed to a training camp in Sjusjoen, Norway, where they spent the last two weeks fine tuning their minds and bodies for the upcoming World Championships.

“The team had a very good camp in Sjusjoen, with perfect conditions and a calm environment for good, focused work,” said U.S. Biathlon Chief of Sport Bernd Eisenbichler. “All the athletes were on individual training plans to work on different details after analyzing the last World Cups and taking into account the needs for Kontiolahti. Everybody is healthy right now, in good spirits and, of course, excited to get started on Thursday. As always, the World Championships are the highlight of the season and we will try to put together our best performances and results there.”

Bailey is a three-time U.S. Olympic Team member and scored the best-ever finish by an American biathlete at the 2014 Winter Olympics with his eighth-place finish in the 20-kilometer individual race.  He has good memories from last race in Kontiolahti where he landed a World Cup podium for the first time is his career.

Burke is also a three-time U.S. Olympic Team member and won the 20 km silver medal at the last World Championships in 2013.  With six World Cup / World Championship podiums in his career, he’s the most successful American biathlete ever.

Doherty, 19, was the youngest team member on the 2014 Olympic Biathlon Team. This season he won the bronze medal in the 10k sprint at last week’s Junior World Championships. Nordgren, also a 2014 Olympian, has three top-20 performances at this season’s World Cup events, including a career-best 16th in the 10k sprint on Feb. 7 in Nove Mesto, Czech Republic.

Cook, who grew up skiing with Burke and Bailey and joined them as a teammate on the 2014 Olympic Team, has three career top-20 performances in World Cup events. She looks to show that level again at these World Championships. Dreissigacker is coming off her best-ever finish at the last World Cup in Oslo where she shot clean and finished 16th, only 11 seconds out of sixth place.

Dunklee is the highest ranked athlete on the World Cup in 16th position having had a 6th- and 8th- place finish this season.  She had her first World Cup podium in March 2014 at the World Cup final in Oslo.

Egan is Team USA’s rookie. The Wellesley College grad made her first World Cup start in January and has made remarkable progress in only her second season competing in biathlon.

“We have a good mix in the team, with podium-experienced athletes like Tim, Lowell and Susan, a new athlete, Clare Egan, and a young athlete, Sean Doherty, who are both at their first World Championships,” added Eisenbichler. “And with Annelies, Hannah and Leif, we have athletes who have showed a clear trend up toward top-10 finishes over the last weeks.”

After arriving in Kontiolahti on Monday, Team USA will enjoy two more days of training and ski testing to get ready for the mixed relay on Thursday. 

The IBU World Championships presented by BMW will be streamed live on Eurovision with English commentary by Chad Salmela, and will also be broadcast on the Universal Sports Network. Schedules are below with all times listed EST.

Broadcast schedule

Date

Eurovision (Live Stream)

Universal Sports

Mar. 5

Mixed relay: 11:15 a.m.

 

Mar. 7

Men’s sprint: 7:00 a.m.

Women’s sprint: 10:30 a.m.

 

Mar. 8

Men’s pursuit: 8:15 a.m.

Women’s pursuit: 11:00 a.m.

 

Mar. 9

 

Mixed relay (from Mar. 5): 8-9 p.m.

Mar. 10

 

Men’s sprint & pursuit (from Mar. 7-8): 8-9 p.m.

Mar. 11

Women’s individual: 12:15 p.m.

Women’s sprint & pursuit (from Mar. 7-8): 8-9 p.m.

Mar. 12

Men’s individual: 12:15 p.m.

 

Mar. 13

Women’s relay: 12:15 p.m.

 

Mar. 14

Men’s relay: 11:30 a.m.

Men’s relay (same-day): 7-8 p.m.

Mar. 15

Women’s mass start: 8:30 a.m.

Men’s mass start: 11:00 a.m.

Women’s mass start (same-day): 6-7 p.m.

Men’s mass start (same-day): 7-8 p.m.

 

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