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Biathlon World Cup tour opening in Finland: Race starts in five days, ticket sales open

Ticket sales for the 2022-23 Biathlon World Cup opening in Kontiolahti have started. After a break of a couple of years, public services are being built again to their full extent.

The Biathlon World Cup season opens in Finland's Kontiolahti at the turn of November-December 29.11.-4.12. During the race week, there are eight starts in the program from Tuesday to Sunday.

—There is a whole set available, from speed races to pursuits, normal races and relays, says event director Sami Leinonen from Kontiolahti Urheilijat ry, which organizes the event.

Public services are expanding

As far as arrangements are concerned, the biggest changes are related to the construction of public services. The audience tent for last spring's World Cup was not recorded after the lifting of the corona restrictions, but in November-December, public services will be built on a full scale.

—Tickets are sold next to the main straight in the A stand, track stand and VIP stand. Free public transportation from the directions of Kontiolahti and Joensuu, as well as a public tent with services, we are now starting to build without restrictions after a break of a couple of years, says Leinonen.

An interesting autumn ahead

Leinonen describes the coming autumn and season as exceptionally interesting for Finns.

—The last season was the best in the entire 2000s in terms of Finnish team success. Hopes are high that the upward trend will continue next winter. Interest is also focused on the work of the new head coach Erik Kulstad, who started in the spring.

The naming of the host of the 2027 World Cup brings extra excitement. The applicants are Finland's Kontiolahti and Estonia's Otepää. The International Biathlon Union IBU will decide the competition host in mid-September.

—Of course, we hope that Kontiolahti will be the host and that we will be able to start preparations for the World Cup already this autumn in connection with the World Cup arrangements. But the host could still be a tight race with Otepää, says Leinonen.

Ticket info: Biathlon World Cup season opening in Kontiolahti November 29-December 4, 2022

Photo: Esa Kinnunen