© Stanislav Krasilnikov/TASS

MOSCOW, March 9. /TASS/. The penultimate season stage of the world Cup biathlon kicks off on Thursday in the Finnish Kontiolahti. In addition to the traditional sprint and pursuit races on Sunday there will be mixed personal, and mixed relay.

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Eighth Cup race of the season was held in Tyumen, but was postponed due to the refusal of its carrying out the Russian biathlon Union after the publication of the second part of the report of the independent Commission of the world anti-doping Agency (WADA) under the leadership of Richard McLaren.

The Finnish round will be held just a few days after the competition in the Olympic Pyeongchang, because the coaches of the national team of Russia made a lot of changes in the team. In the men’s team will perform Anton Shipulin, Evgeny Garanichev, Anton Babikov, Maxim Tsvetkov, Matvey Eliseev and Dmitry Malyshko . Elisha and the baby had replaced Yuri Shopin and Timur Makhambetova, while the women’s team fell to Svetlana Mironova and Svetlana Sleptsova. The composition of the women’s team, considering two of the relay was increased to six people in Kontiolahti will perform Tatiana Akimova, Irina Starykh, Irina Plugin, Victoria Slivko, Daria Virolainen and Ekaterina Shumilova.

The first race in Kontiolahti will be the women’s sprint 7.5 km, which will take place on Thursday at 17:00 GMT, the next day at the same time for 10 km run men. Saturday pursuits – women’s 10 km (14:00 GMT) and the men – 12.5 km (17:15). Sunday at 12:30 GMT will be held the mixed relay at 15:30 – SUPERMIX.

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Fourcade and Shipulin, but without Clean

In the overall world Cup for men was won ahead of Martin Fourcade of France, who established a record, having won in the current season of 12 victories in individual races. To stay He is not going in Kontiolahti will perform, although earlier it was reported that the Finnish stage he will miss because of the imminent birth of a child. Second place in the overall standings is the race that almost guaranteed a place after Fourcade, 89 points ahead of Germany’s Simon Clean that skip a stage in Kontiolahti because of illness.

In the women’s competition is a struggle between the German Laura dahlmeier and Czech Gabriela Koukalova, which is lagging behind by 112 points. Dallmeier have won their last five individual races at the world Cup in Hochfilzen and the stage in Pyeongchang, whereas in the Czech Republic, the Olympic track didn’t even get to number of prize-winners.

Tatiana Akimova, which is the best among the Russians in the overall standings and is in 12th place with 464 points. In the Cup of Nations the Russian women’s team dropped to seventh place, more than 300 points behind the ongoing fifth Italians. Fifth place at the end of the season allows you to set the following Olympic year the maximum quota of athletes – eight on the stage and six in the race.

Located in North Karelia, on the shores of lake Hautanen Kontiolahti is one of the most famous centers of biathlon in Europe. In 1999 and 2015 here world Championships, and Cup stages are held since 1990. Although in 2014 Kontiolahti withdrew from the Cup calendar this season, the organizers have received a new opportunity to take the biathlon elite, replacing Tyumen.

On the 2015 world Championships in Kontiolahti flashed Ekaterina Yurlova, who won the individual race, since the Russian team at the world Championships in the individual events won. Anton Shipulin two years ago at the world Cup became the second in the pursuit race, losing to German Erik Lesser.