Quentin Fillon Maillet completes double in Kontiolahti, lands pursuit crystal globe

The double Olympic gold medallist claimed his sixth pursuit win of the season, as Norway's Tiril Eckhoff took the women's event.

3 min By Andrew Binner
Quentin Fillon Maillet
(Picture by Christophe Pallot/Agence Zoom/Getty Images)

Quentin Fillon Maillet completed a sprint/pursuit double in Kontiolahti, Finland on Sunday (6 March) to win his first biathlon crystal globe.

The Frenchman, who won two golds and three silvers at the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, won the men’s 10km sprint on Saturday before taking the 12.5km pursuit 24 hours later to land the World Cup pursuit series title.

“That is official? That is very great. Having a victory in the pursuit is very good. It was very hard on skis; my shape is not so good compared to Emilien [Jacquelin],” Fillon Maillet said after the 12.5km win.

"I knew I had to be the best on the shooting range. I stayed focused. Maybe some stress on the last mistake but I did not know how Emilien would shoot, but (otherwise) it was very good."

Jacquelin struggled late on to drop from first to fourth with his French teammate extending his lead in the overall World Cup standings.

Fillon Maillet took victory in 32:55, eight seconds ahead of Germany’s Erik Lesser with Italian Lukas Hofer a close third.

Fillon Maillet shot perfectly to take the 10km sprint on Saturday in 23:21, a whopping 18.3 seconds clear of second-placed Norwegian Filip Fjeld Andersen, with Germany’s Johannes Kuehn took third.

That victory also saw the 29-year-old go top of the World Cup sprint rankings.

HIs double triumph leaves him on 756 points in the overall series with Jacquelin his closest challenger on 582.

Tiril Eckhoff on top in women's pursuit

Also on Sunday, 10-time World Championship gold medallist Tiril Eckhoff took victory in women's 10km pursuit after finishing second in Saturday's 7.5km sprint.

Germany's Beijing 2022 15 km individual champion Denise Herrmann beat the Norwegian by five seconds in the sprint with Stina Nilsson of Sweden in third.

Spurred on by that near-miss, Eckhoff put on a pursuit masterclass with two misses in her "really bad" final round of shooting having no bearing on the outcome.

She crossed the line in 31:40.08 to clinch her first individual World Cup win of the season and was delighted with her performance.

"It is very nice to be back on top,” Eckhoff said after her win. I really wanted to win today, so I am very happy.

"I was tired today so it was hard going alone out there in the tracks. I had not the best focus on the last shots. That was a little bit clumsy; I was lucky today."

Italy’s resurgent Dorothea Wierer battled through from 17th at the start of the race to finish 15.9 seconds back in second, while Hermann collected three penalties on the way to third place.

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