Bronze Finish to Season for Egan

By Bill Kellick | March 24, 2019, 9:50 a.m. (ET)

Clare Egan Oslo bronze
Clare Egan notched the first podium finish of her career in the Oslo mass start on Sunday (photo by NordicFocus)

OSLO, Norway (March 24, 2019) – A banner year for Clare Egan (Cape Elizabeth, Maine) ended in perfect fashion on Sunday in Oslo. A year after considering retirement following the Olympic Games in PyeongChang, Egan stood on a World Cup podium with a bronze medal draped around her neck and a smile across her face.

"I decided that I wanted to do one more year, just for fun, just to see how much I could learn and how good a biathlete I could become," said Egan of her decision to continue in the sport. "I had the assistance of my new coach, Armin (Auchentaller), and I had a lot of fun and I became a great biathlete."

Egan posted the top eight finishes of her career this season, including three in the top-10.

"I skied much faster this year than I have in the past and I think that was due to finally finding a good balance in my training, between working hard and resting. I did not train more, but the quality was much higher. I'm very excited for the next season."

After cleaning her first 15 targets in Sunday's 12.5-kilometer mass start, Egan came into the final standing shooting stage in medal contention along with Sweden's Hanna Oeberg and Slovakia's Paulina Fialkova. Following her only miss of the race, she exited the penalty loop in third place, seven seconds behind Norway's Tiril Eckhoff and 15 seconds ahead of fourth-place Denise Herrmann of Germany. Firmly entrenched in the bronze-medal position, Egan wanted more. She chased down and passed Eckhoff to move into second place with 1.5 kilometers left to go, but could not hold off the veteran Norwegian, eventually moving back to third but sewing up her spot on the podium, 10.4 seconds behind winner Oeberg. Eckhoff was 1.3 seconds back for the silver medal.

Egan finishes 18th in this season's World Cup rankings, a year after placing 63rd. She also becomes the first American woman to medal at an IBU event this season.

A replay of Egan's bronze-medal performance will be shown on the NBC Sports Network (http://nbcsnstream.nbcsports.com) at 11:30 p.m. EDT on Monday. Replay with commentary is also available thru www.eurovisionsports.tv/ibu.

In the men's 15km mass start held later in the day, Sean Doherty (Center Conway, N.H.) finished 27th with five penalties, 3:09.1 off the winning time set by Norway's Johannes Thingnes Boe who shot clean. Also shooting clean was Germany's Arnd Peiffer who took the silver medal, 19.2 seconds back. Peiffer's teammate, Benedikt Doll placed third, 38 seconds behind Boe with two penalties.

"I would like to say thank you to the team and all of our supporters for a great season," said Doherty who finished a career-best 25th in the final IBU World Cup rankings, up from 36th a year ago.

Women's 12.5km mass start results

1.

Hanna Oeberg (SWE)

35:56.2/+2

2.

Tiril Eckhoff (NOR)

+1.3/+3

3.

Clare Egan (Cape Elizabeth, Maine)

+10.4/+1


Men's 15km mass start results

1.

Johannes Thingnes Boe (NOR)

37:25.6/+0

2.

Arnd Peiffer (GER)

+19.2/+0

3.

Benedikt Doll (GER)

+38.0/+2

27.

Sean Doherty (Center Conway, N.H.)

+3:09.1/+5