Tune in as the first biathlon event at the 2022 Winter Olympics kicks off with the mixed 4x6km relay from the National Biathlon Center. This event will be one of nine mixed biathlon events included in the Games. In the mixed 4x6km relay, two men and two women compete in this event and will begin with a mass start featuring the first skier from each team. Each skier shoots one prone stage and one standing stage. At each firing sequence, athletes aim to hit five targets and are allowed three extra bullets. Extra targets left standing will consequently require athletes to ski a lap around the 150m penalty loop.
Ranked at number one is the Norwegian squad. As the reigning champions in the women’s and men’s relay, they are the main fan favorites to win gold. The Scandinavians are three-time world champions and have won eight of the last nine World Cups. After experiencing a COVID-19 outbreak prior to the Games that affected training, they will have to come back and hold off the second ranked team from Belarus. The mixed relay team from France are the previous Olympic champions in the women’s and men’s relay with veteran Simon Desthieux being the only returning member from their 2018 gold medal run. Despite a younger French squad, the team has solid athletes to compete in the mixed 4x6km relay and could end up on the medal podium.
Canada, the United States and Japan take the seventh starting row and the 19th, 20th and 21st ranks. Making up the U.S. mixed relay team is Susan Dunklee, Clare Egan, Sean Doherty and Paul Schommer. The U.S. has never won an Olympic medal in biathlon and it is the only Winter Olympic sport in which the U.S. has never won a medal. With a mixed level of past Olympic experience on the U.S. squad, this year’s American biathletes hope to change that.
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