Canada’s Mark Arendz and Emily Young served up a silver and bronze medal in the biathlon middle distance event at the opening day of the Para Nordic World Cup in Sapporo, Japan on Wednesday.
Arendz, of Springton, P.E.I., won the silver in the men’s 12.5-kilometre biathlon standing event. Vancouver’s Young climbed onto the biathlon podium for the first time this year with a bronze in the women’s 10 kilometre standing classification.
The 29-year-old Arendz enjoyed a perfect day of shooting with consistent skiing through tough conditions to clock a silver-medal time of 34:03.8 at the Nishioka Stadium.
“It was deep, soft tracks with the snow falling down on us today, so it wasn’t the fastest times for skiing,” said Arendz, who won six medals at the recent World Championships. “I managed to be consistent throughout, shot clean and was happy with second place.”
Arendz continues to hunt down his top rival, Benjamin Daviet of France. Daviet was also perfect in his four rounds of shooting, finishing with a golden time of 33:13.2. Ukraine’s Grygorii Vovchynskyi was third at 34:23.2 (0+0+0+0).
Canada’s 28-year-old Emily Young enjoyed a strong race despite missing one shot in both her second and last of four stops at the range in the women’s 10-kilometre biathlon race.
The two-time Paralympic medallist punched the clock at 34:55.5 for her first biathlon bronze medal of the season.
“It was a great day for Emily. She had awesome skis and was finally able to push after a tough battle with sickness that got the best of her at World Championships,” said Robin McKeever, head coach, Canadian Para-Nordic Team.
Young’s teammate, Brittany Hudak from Prince Albert, Sask., finished just shy of the podium in fourth place at 34:59.4. The 25-year-old knocked down all 20 targets in shooting and had a solid day of skiing.
The Ukraine won the gold and silver medals. Oleksandra Kononova finished on top of the podium at 32:26.2 (1+0+0+1). Iryna Bui missed one shot in her first trip to the range, but was perfect thereon in, finishing with a silver-medal time of 34:32.7.
Canada also had two athletes in the men’s 12.5-kilometre sit-skiing race. Derek Zaplotinsky, of Smoky Lake, Alta., was sixth at 45:31.6. Collin Cameron, of Sudbury, Ont., finished seventh at 47:59.8 (1+4+3+1).
Daniel Cnossen, of the United States, won the sit-skiing race with a time of 41:19.5 (0+1+0+0).
The Para Nordic World Cup continues on Thursday in Japan.