Pyeongchang-gun. Arnd PEIFFER plays the Olympic bronze Dominic WINDISCH. Photo: Reuters
With the final stage of the mixed relay 33 seconds handicap, the venerable German managed to keep his team outside the winners.
Even before the start of the Games in 2018 Ukrainian experts and fans thought that the best hope for winning medals can be linked with both classic relay races. I must say, assumed quite reasonably. But this is early in the season.
And when finally determined the actual picture of the functional state of yesterday’s leaders and, undoubtedly, the key fighters in their quartets of Sergey Semenova Elena Pidhrushna, these hopes largely dissipated.
And yet, a real sports fan, as a rule, remains an optimist to the end. Accordingly, when in Pyeongchang, absolutely sad for the Ukrainian national team has completed a series of solo races, I had to switch to the cherished expectations at the start of relays.
However, the first one in the program of the Olympic games was listed as mixed, where ever our biathletes, so to say, stars in the sky are not enough. So illusions are not accounted for. And here, in connection with some strange coaching decisions, the company Yulia Jim was not really the most prepared for the battles in Pyeongchang Vita Semerenko and Iryna Varvynets. With its start-up phase and began the total portion of the next disappointment. It is only on the final lap Irina lost the leading Italian Lisa, Vitozzi more than 20 seconds!
Not pleased, and Jim, whose time on the range, in conjunction with poor footwork by the equator of the race threw our team far beyond going ahead three. Yes, and Belarusian Darya Domracheva with the Finca Kaisa makarainen the good work for Yulia when the transfer relay is not even breathed them in the back. However, local failures on the shooting of Norwegian Tiril Eckhoff, Swede Mona Brorsson, Austrian Katharina Innerhofer and especially Slovakian Paulina Fialkova (five penalties on the stage is still have to manage!) has not allowed the Ukrainian team to fall out of the leading ten. Accordingly, a well-known weakness of the male half of the teams of Finland and Belarus, as well as the possible misfire any of your favorites potentially kept her hopes to significantly improve the situation.
But alas! Despite the notable efforts of Dmitry Pidruchna, none of the ahead to give up their positions was not going to, and then there’s the rapid Norwegian of Johanness Be like damn-the-box popped out of trudging in the Wake immediately behind the three leaders, which was represented by athletes from Germany, Italy and France. So hope for a big miracle performed by Artem Prima was not at all, confirmed his strange slow-moving, with a final seventh position.
But in the camp of the leaders in the final stage there was a really amazing metamorphosis. And its author was the only one biathlon – Arnd Peiffer. When Eric lesser at the last transmission provided him with a good 33 seconds handicap, it seemed that soon the representatives of Germany celebrate winning another triumph. Then no one and remembered that Arnd only at the last moment replaced sick Simon Clean, not gotovilis to the mixed relay at all. However, the first time to remember it had been after the prone stage, where the two slip Shoulder put him behind Martin Fourcade. With the phenomenal Frenchman decided not to be content fresh movement to the final firing line, and took the lead. But still the German kept nearby.
And here is the final standing was the team of Germany fatal. With a perfect shooting Fourcade, who soon provided him with the right again to finish proudly with the flag in hand, Peiffer was sent off target with bullet after bullet. As a result, he went to the penalty loop after which he returned not only behind quietly posetivshego silver behind Norwegian Emil Hegle Svendsen, but shoulder to shoulder with Italian Dominik Windisch.
Here is their duel and became the climax of all the mixed relay. Despite periodic acceleration of the German at the finish line just ahead popped his opponent. And, using the rule of advantages when you choose the corridor, undertook actually to oust the left Arnd. That nothing remained but to miss Dominica forward and try to overtake him on the right. But had neither the space nor the energy.
The leadership of the delegations of Germany, in a state of “grogg” desperately protested, but the judge acknowledged the tricky actions of Windisch those that did not violate the rules…
So, in biathlon Olympic games were only both classic relay. Women’s will be held on Thursday, male on Friday. Another time about the chances of Ukrainian quartets to reflect could be long and thorough, but absolutely no desire to go back to the reasons why many of our athletes in Pyeongchang resemble a pale shadow of themselves. Accordingly, let’s just wait for both launches, and after their completion back to the end of the Ukrainian team at the Games in 2018, so to speak, with full alignment and reasoning. Most likely, the unpleasant, even harsh, but work on the errors of conventions and reservations cannot tolerate, isn’t it?
Otherwise, use it as many times history proves, will not be none…
Sergey DATSENKO, Sport-Express in Ukraine
20 Feb. Mixed relay 2×6 + 2×7,5 km. 1. France (Doran Habert, Laura, Destie M. Fourcade) – 1:08.34,3 (0+4). 2. Norway (Olsby, Eckhoff, Th.Be Svendsen) – 20,9 (1+11). 3. Italy (Vitozzi, Wierer, Hofer, Windisch) – 26,9 (0+7). 4. Germany – 27,2 (1+7). 5. Belarus – 55,5 (0+3). 6. Finland – 1.03,9 (0+3). 7. UKRAINE (Varvynets, Jim, Pidruchny, prima) – 1.12,1 90+5). 8. Czech Republic – 1.39,3 (0+8).