BIATHLON Preview: Boe and Wierer still leading as World Cup rolls into snowy Rupolding

Snow-covered stands in Ruhpolding (GER) ahead of this weekend's World Cup (Photo: IBU)

Four down, five left in the 2018-19 IBU World Cup season, with Norway’s Johannes Thingnes Boe continuing to march through the men’s schedule and Italy’s Dorothea Wierer hanging on to a small lead over her up-and-coming teammate Lisa Vittozzi.

The schedule this season favors the shorter Sprint (7.5 km for women, or 10 km for men) and Pursuit (10.0/12.5 km) races instead of the traditional individual races of 20 km. So this week’s schedule in Ruhpolding (GER) has Sprint and Mass Start races and two relays. Only two individual races will be held outside of the World Championships compared to eight Sprints, seven Pursuits and six Mass Starts.

Very heavy snowfall in the area has moved the men’s Sprint to Thursday morning, but the events are expected to take place.

No problem for Boe, who leads the overall World Cup by 542-412 over Alexander Loginov (RUS), and has won an impressive seven of the 10 races held so far! France’s seven-time defending World Cup champion Martin Fourcade has won two and Loginov won the Sprint last week in Oberhof (GER).

Among the women, Italy’s Wierer leads with 438 points to 396 to last week’s double winner Vittozzi, with Paulina Fialkova (SVK) third with 374.

Unlike Boe, Wierer has won only once this season, but she has four other medals and has been consistently good. Vittozzi, a former World Junior Champion, claimed her first World Cup wins last weekend in Oberhof; will she become the new star of the season, or fade?

The women’s four Sprints have had four different winners – Kaisa Makarainen (FIN), Wierer, Marte Olsbu Roiseland (NOR) and Vittozzi – while the four Pursuits have been won by Makarainen (twice), Roiseland and Vittozzi.

Look for results here.