KONTIOLAHTI, Fin. (ISN) —Julia Ransom skied to her first-ever international medal, claiming the silver in the women’s youth pursuit competition at the Biathlon World Championships in Kontiolahti, Finland on Sunday.
Starting time-behind-the-leader in fifth spot based on Friday’s sprint results, the 19-year-old Ransom, of Kelowna, B.C., charged through the challenging 7.5 kilometre course in Finland to clock a time of 27:24.9 (0+0+0+2).
“It feels pretty good. I am really excited,” said Ransom. “It was a goal of mine to get on the podium at World Championships, but I definitely did not expect this today.”
Ransom finished just over six seconds behind winner, Grete Gaim of Estonia, who missed just one shot in four rounds of shooting to post a time of 27:18.1.
“I usually tend to go a bit to fast when I’m skiing in packs, but I was in good control all day today,” said Ransom. “It was perfect conditions today and our skis were so fast thanks to our amazing wax techs.”
Germany’s Annika Knoll also missed one shot in her third of four trips to the range en route to claiming the bronze medal with a time of 27:35.6.
Two other Canadian athletes also skied into the top-10 on the final day of competitions at the Youth and Junior World Championships.
Calgary’s Stuart Harden shot clean to finish sixth in the men’s 10-kilometre youth division, clocking-in at 32:09.7. Calgary’s Kurtis Wenzel also rebounded to the top form he displayed earlier in the week when he became the first Canadian to win agold medal at the Junior Worlds in biathlon. Wenzel finished seventh at 36:03.0 (0+1+0+0) in the junior men’s 12.5-kilometre division.
Other Canadian results included: Calgary’s Christian Gow in 15th at 33:24.3(0+2+0+1); and Quebec’s Albert Bouchard was 30th with a time of 34:54.6 (0+1+0+2) in the youth men’s 10-kilometre event. Calgary’s Aaron Gillmor was 38th in the junior men’s 12.5-kilometre competition with a time of 39:40.8(0+1+1+2). Sarah Beaudry, of Prince George, B.C., was 20th at 29:58.5 (1+0+3+1); and Quebec’s Rose-Marie Cote finished 42nd at 32:09.1 in the youth women’s 7.5-kilometre event. Quebec’s Audrey Vaillancourt was the top Canuck in the junior women’s 10-kilometre competition, placing 17th at 37:04.5 (0+0+1+0). Calgary’s Keely Macculloch finished 38th at 41:14.3 (0+0+1+0), while Emma Lunder, of Canmore, Alta., was 44th at 43:30.9 (2+2+1+1), and Emma Lodge, of Canmore, Alta., placed 52nd with a time of 45:40.7 (2+0+2+4).
Biathlon Canada, the governing body for biathlon in the country, oversees the Canadian Championships, Eastern and Western Canadian Championships, and North American Cups held in Canada. The organization’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 their Web site at www.biathloncanada.ca on the Internet.
Complete Results: www.biathlonworld.com