Zina Kocher Posts Career-Best Individual World Championship Result

Zina Kocher will take a lot of positives with her into the final weekend of the Biathlon World Championships in Ruhpolding, Germany. The 29-year-old Kocher, of Red Deer, Alta., squeaked into the top-30 in 26th spot after clocking a time of 47:24. 6 in the women’s 15-kilometre individual competition.

“It was not a terrible day but not fantastic either,” said Kocher. “I had strong skiing again and the race was going really well until the final standing. I knew I needed a clean standing for a top-15.”

The individual event, the longest discipline in the biathlon line-up puts an emphasis on shooting as athletes are charged an additional one-minute penalty for every missed shot in their four trips to the range. Kocher went 1+0+1+2 in her four rounds of shooting en route to one of her best-ever World Championship finishes.

“on a positive note this is my strongest WorldChampionship results even though I feel I finished below my true potential,” added Kocher. “I’m stoked that I’ve moved into 21st in World Cup points today, which qualifies me for my first mass start ever at a World Championships and that is great.”

Norway’s Tora Berger missed just one shot to clock a golden time of 42:30.0. Marie Laure Brunet, of France, also shot one blank in her last round of shooting to post a silver-medal time of 43:26.4. Sweden’s Helena Ekholm rounded out the podium in third at 43:41.1 (1+0+0+0).

Three other Canadian women also hit the start line on Wednesday. Megan Heinicke, of Prince George, B.C., was 30th at 47:44.3 (1+0+1+0), while Megan Imrie, of Falcon Lake, Man., placed 47th at 49:10.0 (0+1+2+2), and Yolaine Oddou, of Val Belair, Que. was 97th at 55:48.5 (3+0+4+0).