Men’s 10K Sprint Biathlon

Posted on February 15, 2010

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The beautiful 2010 Olympics biathlon logo.

Tim burke, a 28-year-old American from Paul Smiths, N.Y., came into the Men’s 10K sprint ranked 12th in the World Cup standings, and was supposed to have a to make the podium. That didn’t happen.

A ridiculous storm episode sprung upon the competitors and affected every rider who started after the 15th position. Burke started 29th and was part of this unlucky group. The heavens were sunlit before the race, and the early starters began cross-country skiing through a light drizzle on an icy track. For the uninformed, an icy track is a faster track. Burke took off in heavy rain, which turned to sleet, and after his first round of shooting it turned to weighty snow. This caused the course to get crunchy and incredibly slow. He can also thank the snow for the slush in his sights during his second round of shooting, where he missed two critical targets. By the time he finished it was raining heavily again. By the time he could be reached for interviews, the sun was shining again.

“That was by far the most unfair race I’ve ever been a part of. The people starting in the middle of the pack had no chance today, and unfortunately, I was one of those.”

Only one biathlete that finished in the top 10 started outside the first 15. Disappointing? Yes; not only for the United States, but for contenders from many nations. Happens? Yes, which is one thing I do love about Winter Olympics; the elements are just as much an obstacle as are the competitors.

If you would like to know more about the Biathlon, my personal favorite of the Winter Olympics, just click here.

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Posted in: Sports