Biathlon returns to the Fort Kent Outdoor Center. 8 senior competitors were in action today for a time trial and this week a larger field is expected.
(Carl Theriault):" Beyond that we have the Nor Am competition which is Saturday and Sunday. That is open to all competitors. There will be a lot of Seniors, Juniors, Masters a little bit of everything."
Fort Kent's Cody Johnson is back in the County for a few days. Johnson trains with the National Guard team and he says it is always great to be back to where he got his start
(Cody Johnson):" I love it. It is cold up here, but it an amazing venue. Volunteers who put it on are awesome."
Hunter Zupko of Minnesota who also skis for the National Guard team is still a junior competitor, but he made the trip to get some additional experience
(Hunter Zupko):" It is a great venue. Snow is perfect it is a beautiful day. Everything is set up super nice."
It has been a difficult winter for training with a lack of snow in parts of New England
Zupko:" This year has kind of been a struggle especially in Vermont, but we have gone places we can get good snow and made it work."
Johnson:" Lots of training and skiing in other places I think I have done pretty well."
Johnson had the best shooting of any competitor on the day shooting clean in prone and missing just one in standing. Johnson finished second to Raleigh Goessling who skied for Maine Winter sports a few years ago. Goessling finished in 27:33 25 seconds ahead of Johnson. On the women's side Makayla Maier missed four targets and won the women's race finishing in a time of 27:34
Johnson says he would like to have a good showing this weekend and try to get back to Europe.
Johnson:" Race them all season and see where I stack up and hopefully get over to Europe."
The Fort Kent Outdoor center has hosted several biathlons over the years including World Cup events and Theriault says he wants to keep the legacy of biathlon alive in the St John Valley
Theriault:" We did this last year a similar event last year. A little bit better this year because we were adding the Senior trials in with it. My goal is to always have a biathlon competition here every winter. That is the goal we have to keep biathlon cooking and this is the best way to do it. The goal it get as many local youth involved as we can and build the youth up from the base up."