Two U.S. Women Have Big Day on Snow (Chicago Tribune)

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Chicago TribuneIn her first-ever Biathlon World Championship 15-kilometer race, former collegiate NCAA All-American cross-country skier, Susan Dunklee ’08, recorded the highest finish (fifth place) ever by a U.S. woman in the event.

Dunklee missed earning a medal by just seven seconds at the March 7 biathlon event in Ruhpolding, Germany, reports the Chicago Tribune. “Halfway through my fourth (penultimate) lap, I heard an announcer saying that I was in the lead,” Dunklee told the Chicago Tribune. “That was a little terrifying. I was very glad I still had a couple hills to go before the range so I could compose myself before my final shooting stage.”

Read the full story, published 3/7/12 in the Chicago Tribune.

Dunklee is just one of three Dartmouth alumnae currently competing at the top levels of biathlon. Sara Studebaker ’07, a former Big Green cross-country ski team member and a 2010 Olympian, finished 38th in the 15-kilometer race at the Biathlon World Championships along side Dunklee in Germany. Rounding out the Dartmouth contingency is Laura Spector ’10, also a former Big Green cross-country skier and a 2010 Olympian.

In World Cup competition, biathletes ski stretches of 2 to 3 kilometers that are interspersed with trips to the shooting range, where they fire a .22 caliber rifle at targets 50 meters away.

In an article in the Dartmouth Alumni Magazine’s April/May issue, the alumnae shared their insights about competing at such an elite level and the strategies that they use on race day.

In the article, Studebaker says, “The goal is to spend as little time in the range as possible, and you need to spend a certain amount of time actually shooting, so cutting time setting up and getting out is key.”

Read the full story by Chelsea Little ’09, published in the March/April 2012 issue of Dartmouth Alumni Magazine.