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In the middle of season...
02/23/07  Tim Burke
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I am currently in Ruhpolding, Germany enjoying a little downtime after World Championships. The rest of the team returned back to the US but I decided to stay in Europe in order to minimize travel time and start preparing for
the remaining three World Cups. Unlike most of the US, Europe has still
been plagued with an unseasonably warm winter and little snow. Normally at this time of year Ruhpolding has feet upon feet of snow and endless kilometers of ski trails. Unfortunately, the grass is still green here and the only snow is 2.5-kilometer man-made loop at the biathlon venue.

I had a great time racing at World Championships in Italy. The weather was beautiful the whole time we were there and the venue sits at a high enough elevation that the skiing was fantastic. The beautiful weather combined with the Italian Alps and 20,000 cheering fans made for a great week of racing. Going into World Championships I was a little nervous that I had lost my good ski form because I had been a bit sick the week before. To my surprise my ski form stayed strong but it was my shooting that lacked in the first few races. Iím not sure why I struggled. Maybe I put a little too much pressure on myself after having my career best races at the World Cup before World Championships; I definitely expected a lot out of myself in Italy. After struggling through the first two races I finally pulled it together for the Individual competition. I combined my best shooting performance of the year with one of my best ski races of the year and I placed 7th. This was the best result for the US at World Championships since 1987! I was thrilled with the result but at the same time I was painfully close to a top three finish.

It felt great to leave World Championships with a solid result and ranked 22nd in the World Cup Overall. This definitely gives me a lot of confidence heading into the last part of the season.

I will be here in Germany training for another week and then I head to Finland for one of the final three World Cups of the season. From Finland we go to Norway for a week of racing and then we end the season in Russia at the end of March. By that time I will be looking forward to a little break and some time back in my own bed!

I hope all is well and I will be sure to update as soon as we start racing again.

My Best,