Crawford’s career-best builds on historic start to World Cup season for Canadian squad

biathalon canada

December 15, 2012, POKLJUKA, Slo. (ISN) – Canada’s Rosanna Crawford had the race of her life on Friday, finishing 12th at the Biathlon World Cup in Pokljuka, Slovenia. The 24-year-old Crawford, who has split time on the IBU Cup and World Cup circuits over the last fiveyears, enjoyed a nearly perfect day.

Shooting clean en route to posting a time of 23 minutes, 01.9 seconds in the women’s 7.5-kilometre sprint competition.

The 2010 Olympian, who has battled for spots in the top-half of the deep World Cup field, is turning heads on the international circuit with back-to-back career weekends. The sister to Olympic cross-country skiing champ, Chandra Crawford, the Canmore, Alta., native climbed into the elite top-30 for the first time one week ago with 24th and 25th place finishes in the sprint and pursuit events in Austria.

“I made a big mental switch this year from focusing on results to focusing on the process of skiing and shooting,” said Crawford, who added heavy snow fall made for a challenging day. “I feel this has made the biggest difference for me. Dreaming of being in the top-30 will not put you there. Trusting your training and knowing you are a good skier and shooter will be the reason you make the results you want!”

The sharp-shooting Canuck credits her work on the range for her success.

“Shooting has always been my strong point. I am also pretty fast in the range for shooting time and getting in and out. I feel like this makes up a little bit for not being asfast on the skis.”

The strong day for theCanucks continued with Zina Kocher, of Red Deer, Alta., posting a 16th-place finish. The two-time Olympian missed two shots to clock a time of 23:16.1.

The Canadian girls still have nearly one minute of time to make up if they want to be on top of the podium. Gabrielle Soukalova, of Czech Republic, shot clean to win the gold with a time of 22:09.8. Germany’s Miriam Gossner was second at 22:11.9 (22:11.9), while Nadezhda Skardino, of Belarus, was also clean in two rounds of shooting to claim the bronze medal with a time of 22:39.9.

Megan Heinicke, of Prince George, B.C., was 45th at 24:07.7 (0+2), while Megan Imrie, of Falcon Lake,Man., finished 90th (26:27.7 – 2+4).

Regina’s Scott Perras was the top Canadian in Thursday’s 10-kilometre men’s sprint. Perras missed two shots in his final stop at the range en route to posting a time of 26:14.7 for 34th place. Calgary’s Scott Gow was tied for 50h at 26:36.6 (1+1), while Jean-Philippe Le Guellec, of Shannon, Que., finished well back in 83d spot at 27:58.1 (1+3).

Slovenia’s Jakov Fak thrilled the hometown crowd by winning the gold medal with a time of 24:41.7 (0+0)

Complete Results:

Top-Five Women and Canadian Results:

1.  Gabriela Soukalova, CZE, (0+0), 22:09.8
2. Miriam Gossner, GER, (0+2), 22:11.9
3. Nadezhda Skardino, BLR, (0+0), 22:39.9
4. Vita Semerenko, UKR, (1+0), 22:41.3
5. Marie Dorin Habert, FRA, (0+0), 22:43.7

Canadian Results:

12. Rosanna Crawford, Canmore, Alta., (0+0), 23:01.9
16. Zina Kocher, Red Deer, Alta., (1+1), 23:16.1
45. Megan Heinicke, Prince George, B.C., (0+2), 24:07.7; 90. MeganImrie, Falcon Lake, Man., (2+4), 26:27.7

Top-Five Men and Canadian Results:

1. Jakov Fak, SLO, (0+0), 24:41.7
2. Emil Hegle Svendsen, NOR (0+1), 24:42.5
3. Martin Fourcade, FRA, (0+0), 24:47.8
4. Tim Burke, USA, (0+0), 24:56.9
5. Jean Guillaume Beatrix, FRA, (0+1), 25:00.3

Canadian Results:

34. Scott Perras, Regina, (0+2), 26:14.7
T50. Scott Gow, Calgary, (1+1), 26:36.6; 83. Jean-Philippe Le Guellec, Shannon, Que., (1+3), 27:58.1

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