Clean Shooting Propels Wright to World Championship Personal Best
by Sara Donatello
Campbell Wright (Wanaka, NZL/U.S. Biathlon) skied to a World Championship personal best 11th place in the men’s 10km sprint at the 2024 World Championships in Nove Mesto na Morave, Czech Republic, his first race of the event. Wright cleaned both his prone and standing shoots and crossed the line just four seconds behind Martin Ponsiluoma of Sweden, who finished in 10th.
“You don’t get to rest very much on the course,” said Wright. “I was just thinking ‘don’t blow up on the whole last lap on those working flats and uphills’ because on a lot of courses you get downhills, but here you don’t get a downhill until the last 30 percent. I’m happy with 11th, no complaints from me!”
Wright’s time was +1.07 behind the sprint World Champion, Sturla Holm Laegreid of Norway, who also shot clean. Laegreid was joined on the podium by Norwegian teammates Johannes Thinges Boe and Vetle Sjaastad Christiansen. Wright’s 11th place finish rewrote his previous season best and World Cup personal best 12th place last month in Ruhpolding, Germany.
Team USA also had two athletes place top-45 in the men’s 10km sprint, who will join Wright on the start line in the men’s 12.5km pursuit. Jake Brown (St. Paul, MN/Craftsbury Green Racing Project) finished 38th with three misses and Sean Doherty (Center Conway, NH/National Guard Biathlon) crossed the line in 44th, also with three misses on the day. Maxime Germain (Chamonix-Mont Blanc, FRA/National Guard Biathlon) landed in 63rd, just out of pursuit contention.
Just the day before, Deedra Irwin (Pulaski, WI/Army World Class Athlete Program) took the top finish for the U.S. women, finishing in 39th in the women’s 7.5km sprint. Tara Geraghty-Moats raced to a World Championship personal best 58th, missing just one shot in standing and qualifying for her first pursuit. Chloe Levins (Rutland, VT/Team Crosscut) and Jackie Garso (Lake Clear, NY/Craftsbury Green Racing Project) crossed the line in 80th and 87th.
Sunday will feature the women’s 10km pursuit, which is set to begin at 8:30 ET/2:30 CET with Irwin in bib 39 and Geraghty-Moats in bib 58. The men’s 12.5km pursuit will feature Wright in bib 11, Brown in bib 38 and Doherty in bib 44, kicking off at 11:05 ET/5:05 CET. Information regarding how to watch can be found at usbiathlon.org/how-to-watch. Spectator information can be found at usbiathlon.org/spectator-resources.