Wilson dominates U.S. biathlon trials to make 4th world championships

Thursday, January 2, 2020 - 09:42
  • Alaska’s Helen Wilson makes her way up the trail during the girls U20/U18 5-kilometer freestyle race at the 2019 U.S. Junior National Cross Country Championships on Monday, March 11, 2019 at Kincaid Park in Anchorage. (Star file photo/Matt Tunseth)

Helen Wilson used a precision performance in Vermont to punch her ticket to Switzerland.

The Eagle River biathlete dominated the U.S. Biathlon Association Junior Trials Dec. 28-31, winning two of her three races to qualify for her fourth IBU Youth & Junior World Biathlon Championships to be held later this month in Switzerland.

A 2019 Eagle River High grad who now attends the University of Alaska Anchorage, Wilson, 18, won the Youth (U19) Women’s sprint race on Dec. 28, shooting the only clean round of the competition and placing second overall behind Junior (U21) Women’s champion Chloe Levins.

On Monday, Wilson topped herself, winning both the Junior title and beating every one of her older competitors while missing just four targets to win the pursuit race.

On New Year’s Eve, Wilson made her third podium in three races by placing third in Junior division in the second sprint race of the competion to finish first in overall points.

Wilson will be joined on the U.S. team by Utah’s Lina Farra, Minnesota’s Kaisa Bosek and Washington’s Eva Weymuller on the four-woman Female Youth team.

It marks the fourth straight year Wilson has qualified for the world championships. She also represented the U.S. in 2017 in Slovakia, in 2018 in Estonia and in 2019, again in Slovakia.

She currently skis collegiately for the UAA Nordic team while representing the Anchorage Biathlon Club and the Eagle River-based Alaska Nordic Racing club teams.

The world championships will be held Jan. 26-Feb. 2 in Lenzerheide, Switzerland.

“The trials races were highly competitive, with bigger field sizes than we’ve seen in recent history,” said U.S. Biathlon Director of High Performance Lowell Bailey in a statement released by the U.S. team.

Also qualifing for the U.S. team at the world championships on the men’s side was Alaskan Maxime Germain, a West High grad who placed second twice and third once at the trials.

Wilson wasn’t the only Eagle River High Wolves skier making an impression at the trials. Czech exchange student Anezka Hendrychova also had a strong showing, placing third among Youth Women in the first sprint race and fourth in the other two events.

For more, visit the U.S. Biathlon website.

Facebook comments