CANMORE, Alta. (ISN) — Canada’s Megan Heinicke had one of the best performances of her career while capturing the bronze medal at the Biathlon IBU Cup in Canmore, Alta. on Wednesday.
The 23-year-old Heinicke missed just one shot in her four rounds of shooting to clock a time of 45:00.5 (0+0+0+1) in ideal conditions for the women’s 15-kilometre individual competition at thepicturesque Canmore Nordic Centre.
“It is painful when you have a good shooting race and you still miss one,” said Heinicke. “I was totally focused and felt really good on the range and that is the most important thing for an individual competition.”
The longest biathlon discipline, the individual competition puts an emphasis on shooting with athletes being charged a one-minute penalty for every missed shot.
The 2010 Olympian, Heinicke of Prince George, B.C., was leading for most of the race until dropping a shot in her final stop at therange before heading out for her last of five three-kilometre loops around the Canmore track.
“You always want to aim for perfect so there is always something still to improve,” said Heinicke. “I was super happy with today’s race, but I’m definitely hungry for more.”
The Canadian was joined on the podium by Russia’s Marina Korovina who clocked the top time at 44:42.6 despite missing two shots (1+0+1+0). Lanny Barnes, of the United States, was second at 44:50.8 (0+0+1+0).
Another Canadian also had the race of her life in Canmore. Melanie Schultz, of Camrose, Alta., skied just shy of the podium despite putting down the best result of her career. The 26-year-old shot clean en route to a fourth-place time of 45:15.6.
“I was just really focused on the shooting, came into the range nice and relaxed and slowed down my shooting today,” said Schutlz. “I know that in an individual if I shot 20 for 20 I can be on or near the podium so that was my goal today. It was a good race.”
OtherCanadian women’s results include: Quebec’s Yolaine Oddou was 20th (3+1+1+0) 50:43.5; Karen Messenger in 25th (0+2+0+0) 51:28.1; Rosanna Crawford, Canmore, Alta., placed 26th (1+0+2+2) 51:36.6; Quebec’s Claude Godbout was 33rd (1+3+1+3) 54:32.8; Carly Shiell, of Camrose, Alta., in 35th (1+3+1+0) 56:39.2; Cindy Clark placed 36th (2+3+1+1) 58:29.0; and Kathryn Stone, of Grand Prairie, Alta., was 37th (3+5+0+4) 1:01:45.8.
Earlier in the day, Matthew Neumann, of Prince George, B.C., finished as the top Canadian in the men’s 20-kilometre individual event after clocking a 16th-place time of 57:54.6 (0+1+1+1).
Neumann finished three minutes, 26 seconds off the leading pace set by Ludgwig Ehrhart, of France, who posted a golden time of 54:28.6 (0+0+0+1). Russia’s Maksim Burtasov claimed the silver with a time of 55:13.8 (0+2+0+0), while Remi Borgeot, of France, finished third with a time of 55:49.6 (0+0+2+1).
OtherCanadian performances included: David Gregoire, of Chartierville, Que., was 24th (0+0+0+1) 58:51.7); Marc-Andre Bedard, of Valcartier, Que., finished 26th (1+4+1+0), 59:08.9; Ottawa’s Robin Clegg placed 28th (1+3+0+2) 59:43.8; Patrick Cote, of Grand Sault, N.B., in 30th (2+1+0+1), 1:00:17.8; Calgary’s Tyson Smith in 34th (0+1+2+2) 1:01:15.0; and Calgary’s Beau Thompson in 35th (0+2+1+2), 1:01:37.9.
The IBU Cup wraps up on Thursday at the Canmore Nordic Centre with the men’s and women’s sprint competitions.
Biathlon Canada is the governing body for biathlon in the country and oversees the Canadian Championships, Eastern and Western Canadian Championships, and North American Cups held inCanada. With the support of its valued corporate partners – Millennium Geomatics Ltd., Apogée Sports, Kama, Auclair Gloves, Lapua, USANA, and Adidas Eyewear – along with the Government of Canada, Canadian Olympic Committee and Own thePodium, Biathlon Canada’s mandate is to provide national level programs for the continuous development of biathlon athletes from the grassroots to the elite level. For more information on Biathlon Canada, please visit us at www.biathloncanada.ca on the Internet.