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Tim Burke hits his stride in Antholz Sprint

Sat, Jan  24, 2009 - By US Biathlon Association

Antholz, Italy, January 23, 2009. Tim Burke (Paul Smiths, NY) greeted the course in Antholz, Italy like an old friend as he posted one of the fastest ski times of the day.

"This is an awesome course for me," said Burke after the race. "And the best part is that it is a lot like the Olympic course in Vancouver." Biathletes use different techniques depending on the terrain they are covering, steep hills require a technique called V1 while more gradual climbs can be tackled with V2. Burke is a V2 specialist. "This course, like the one in Vancouver, is almost all V2, I think I did maybe five V1s out there today. This course was made for me."

Burke took his time on the shooting range today and escaped prone shooting clean in 32 seconds, leaving the range in 7th place. Over the next loop he logged the 3rd best time only 0.6 seconds behind the eventual winner Emil Svendsen of Norway. Back on the range for standing shooting he missed the last two shots - splitting one bullet at three oclock. His 50 seconds on the penalty loop and a little longer than normal range times left him in 16th place leaving the range but he managed to make up time on the last loop and finished 15th, 59 seconds behind the overall World Cup leader from Norway Emil Svendsen.

"The distance to a medal was two shots today," said US Development Coach James Upham who was supporting the team on the range in Antholz, Italy. "Tim has a really nice start position for the Pursuit tomorrow and his skiing is there." Start positions in 12.5 km Pursuit are based on the time back from the winner in 10 km Sprint so Burke will go out in 15th place just under a minute behind the leader.

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