Image coming soon

The previous Kontiolahti World Championships in 2015 brought race tourists to Finland primarily from the Nordic countries, Russia and Central Europe. Photo: Niina Rimpiläinen.


World Championships 2027: The Kontiolahti Athletes and the Finnish Biathlon Union apply to be hosted by Finland

The Finnish Biathlon Union and the Kontiolahti Athletes are starting the application process to get the 2027 World Championships in Finland. The last time Kontiolahti competed in the biathlon world championships in 2015.

The Congress of the International Biathlon Union IBU, which will meet next September, will decide the host of the 2027 World Championships. The Kontiolahti Athletes and the Finnish Biathlon Union are preparing the application process for the Games to be held in Finland.

—In Kontiolahti, the World Championships for adults have been organized twice and the World Championships for young people three times. In the years 2020-24 Kontiolahti has a streak of six World Cup events going on. We want to stay involved in the competition between competition organizers and develop. Hosting the World Championships after a 12-year break would be a significant development step, says Kimmo Turunen, chairman of the Kontiolahti Sportsmen's Association.

—Biathlon, as Europe's most interesting winter sports TV sport, requires event organizers to have strong professional skills and a spirit of service, a constantly developing competition stadium and snow security, so that the competitions can be held regardless of the weather. Internationally, Kontiolahti is considered one of the best biathlon competition venues and organizers, says the chairman of the Finnish Biathlon Association, trade advisor Kalle Lähdesmäki.

Collaboration and event expertise are the keys

In addition to the cooperation between the Kontiolahti Athletes and the Finnish Biathlon Union, the World Championships and World Cup events in Kontiolahti have been built with regional cooperation between the municipality of Kontiolahti, the city of Joensuu, the regional federation of North Karelia, the area's business life and other regional actors.

—Northern Karelia is known for its strong commitment to common goals. World Cup events have been organized in Kontiolahti for more than 30 years - it's been great to see how a story that started small has grown over the decades and inspired a wide range of people to participate, says Kontiolahti's municipal manager Jari Tuononen.

Successful international biathlon events have brought significant income and visibility to the region. For example, the regional economic effects of the 2017 World Cup event were estimated to be more than 3.5 million euros. Of this, the share of purchased accommodation services alone was one million euros.

—By joining forces and event expertise, we have managed to establish our place as competition organizers in a tough international competition. Cooperation has been our strength and a prerequisite for future competition hosts as well, says Kimmo Turunen.

Kontiolahti municipal government and Joensuu city government will discuss the matter in their meetings next Monday.

Info: Biathlon World Championships

  • Every year in February-March, except for the years of the Winter Olympics
  • First time in Saalfelden, Austria in 1958.
  • First time in Finland in Hämeenlinna in 1962.
  • Held in Kontiolahti in 1999 and 2015. In 1990, the men's relay world championship was decided in Kontiolahti.