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Mari Eder and Nastassia Kinnunen skied together with Suvi Minkkinen and Erika Jänkä in the women's relay to seventh place. Photo: Kalle Parkkinen


Biathlon World Cup: "Finland's best start to the season in the entire 2000s"

In the coming weekend's competitions, Finns have a chance to compete for the top positions, says the Norwegian head coach of the national team.

The Finnish biathlon team has started the season very strongly under the leadership of Norwegian head coach Erik Kulstad.

"It seems that in the first competitions we have been able to take the good development steps of the summer season into competition performances as well", says Kulstad.

According to the coach, the overall strength of the team is indicated by the fact that Finland finished sixth and seventh in the relays, even though they had to go around the penalty round. The men were just three seconds short of fourth place.

The whole team succeeded

After the opening competitions of the season, both the Finnish women's and men's team are in seventh place in the World Cup country points. At the end of last season, the men were in tenth place and the women in 11th place.

Executive Director of the Finnish Biathlon Union Tapio Pukki is satisfied with how half of the national team has already opened their points balance in the individual Cup series. He thanks not only the athletes but also the rest of the team and its collective spirit.

“Our maintenance team and training have been excellent. In my opinion, this has been the best start to the season by the Finnish national team in the entire 2000s."

"We can compete for top positions"

Kulstad says that when the Finns get to do their best, the team can compete for top positions in the weekend's sprint race and pursuit.

“So far, we have already succeeded in several areas excellently. When the missing pieces are put in place, we can expect even more than before."

He encourages the audience to get into the stands on the spot.

"All athletes get extra power from the support of the home crowd."