ÖSTERSUND, Sweden (December 2, 2012) - Team USA wrapped World Cup 1 in Oestersund this morning with Tim Burke (Paul Smiths, NY) posting the top result for the team, 15th, in the 12.5k Pursuit. Starting with bib 18, Burke finished with a time of 34:03.1/0+1+0+1, just 59.6 seconds back from World Cup leader Martin Fourcade (FRA) winning with a time of 33:03.5 and 1 penalty, edging out Andreas Birnbacher (GER) in second (33:04.2/0+0+1+0), and Anton Shipulin (RUS) in third (33:06.8/0+0+1+0).
"I am really happy with today's performance, especially considering the conditions," said Burke. "It was extremely cold today, which made for some tricky shooting for me. I had a really hard time to even load the rifle because I could not feel my hands at all. Now I am looking forward to going South and racing in some warmer temperatures and maybe even seeing some sun! "
Lowell Bailey (Lake Placid, NY) finished 21st, starting with bib 30. Bailey posted a time of 34:15.6 and just two penalties in the last standing stage. Leif Nordgren (Marine, MN) started with bib 54 and finished 59th today with a time of 40:06.1 and 8 penalties.
"I'm definitely satisfied with the progression of the first four races of the season," said Bailey. " I started out a little sluggish on the skis, but by today I was feeling much snappier and had good speed throughout the race. It was nice to be back up in the front, fighting for a top ten. Although I wish I could have hit one or two more in the last stage, I feel pretty good about the overall performance and I'm looking forward to Hochfilzen, sunshine, and Schnitzel!"
I'm pretty disappointed in my race today," said Nordgren. "Every pursuit race is a chance to improve on your position, and today I wasn't able to execute in shooting so it held me back. It was good experience though the first two loops, just goes to show how you need to keep your calm in the range. I'm looking forward to Hochfilzen though.With a few races under the belt now hopefully I can improve on this week!"
Extended results from today's 12.5k Pursuit are available here. "
Susan Dunklee (Barton, VT) posted a 39th place finish in today's 10k Pursuit, starting with bib 43. Dunklee's time of 34:56.4/1+1+2+1, was 3:54.5 back from Tora Berger (NOR). Berger's time of 31:01.9, with just one penalty the final standing stage, capped a hat-trick of wins for the week in Östersund as she took the Individual and Sprint wins as well. Darya Domracheva (BLR) finished second (31:31.7/0+0+1+0), and Andrea Henkel (GER) took third with clean shooting and a time of 31:53.4. Full results from the women's 10k Pursuit are available here.
"I was happy to be able to move up a few places out there today and there is still lots of room for improvement in upcoming races, especially on the range," said Dunklee. "I could hear my teammates cheering for me loudly at the top of one of the hills and can't wait to rock the relay with them in Hochfilzen next week." Following World Cup 1, overall World Cup rankings are: Burke 20th, Bailey 26th, and Dunklee 52nd. World Cup 2 starts Friday in Hochfilzen, Austria.