Career-Best 13th for Doherty in Mass Start

By Bill Kellick | Jan. 20, 2019, 10:18 a.m. (ET)


Sean Doherty (l) moved up from his back-row starting position to finish 13th in Sunday's mass start (photo by NordicFocus)

RUHPOLDING, Germany (Jan. 20, 2019) – Sean Doherty (Center Conway, N.H.) blistered his way through the back half of Sunday's men's 15-kilometer mass start on the final day of the BMW IBU World Cup in Ruhpolding to post his best-ever finish in the event. His previous best in the mass start was 24th and his performance today ties a career-high performance in World Cup events, equaling a 13th-place finish in the sprint three years ago.

"It is always a pleasure to race a mass start," Doherty said. "Today we had a fantastic race atmosphere. I am very happy to have held my own going toe-to-toe with the best in the world. Looking forward to the next mass start."

After starting in the 30th position in the 30-man field, Doherty spent the first half of the race near the tail end with single penalties in both prone stages, but he turned up the heat in the second half of the race. Fueled by clean stages in standing, Doherty raced to the third-fastest time on lap 3, and the fifth-fastest time on lap 4 to move up the field and cross the line in 13th position, 42.2 seconds behind the leader. Overall, he had the fifth-best range time in the field.

Norway's Johannes Thingnes Boe made a comeback on the last loop to win the men's mass start in 36:43.8 with a single standing penalty. Austria's Julian Eberhard, with two penalties, finished second, .6 seconds back. Quentin Fillon Maillet of France, with one penalty, finished third, 2.8 seconds behind Boe.

The women's 12.5km mass start followed the men's race and American Clare Egan (Cape Elizabeth, Maine) asserted herself early on. After cleaning both prone stages, Egan briefly took the lead on the third lap, but three penalties in the first standing stage knocked her out of contention. She would finish 24th with five penalties, 1:59.7 back. Teammate Susan Dunklee (Barton, Vt.) crossed the line behind Egan in 25th place with four penalties, 2:12.5 behind the winner.

Germany's clean-shooting Franziska Preuss claimed her first-ever World Cup victory, taking the women's mass start in 32:34. Norway's Ingrid Landmark Tandrevold also had a personal best and career first World Cup podium in second place, .2 seconds back. Slovakia's Paulina Fialkova finished third, 15.1 seconds behind Preuss.

The biathletes will now pack their bags and head to Italy for the fifth stop on the World Cup circuit. Competition in Antholz-Anterselva begins Thursday with the women's 7.5km sprint.

WAYS TO WATCH:
Fans can watch a same-day replay of World Cup races on the Olympic Channel (check your local listings). Replay with commentary is also available thru www.eurovisionsports.tv/ibu.

Men’s 15km mass start results

1.

Johannes Thingnes Boe (NOR)

36:43.8/+1

2.

Julian Eberhard (AUT)

+0.6/+2

3.

Quentin Fillon Maillet (FRA)

+2.8/+1

13.

Sean Doherty (Center Conway, N.H.)

+42.2/+2


Women’s 12.5km mass start results

1.

Franziska Preuss (GER)

32:34.0/+0

2.

Ingrid Landmark Tandrevold (NOR)

+0.2/+0

3.

Paulina Fialkova (SVK)

+15.1/+1

24.

Clare Egan (Cape Elizabeth, Maine)

+1:59.7/+5

25.
Susan Dunklee (Barton, Vt.)
+2:12.5/+4