There is still no snow on the grounds of the World Championships in Oberhof. The sports director of the International Biathlon Federation assures that the games can be held.
This winter, for example, the alpine skiing and combined competitions have had to be canceled due to the warm weather and lack of snow. In cross-country skiing, the fate of at least one race weekend is threatened.
However, the Biathlon World Cup has not had to be canceled yet.
However, biathlon has also seen competitions where there are large grassy areas around the track. For example, last weekend, green landscapes from Ruhpolding in Germany were transmitted to TV pictures.
The race organizers have been awake. The tracks have been created with the help of preserved snow.
– It’s a shame that there are green areas around most of the competition venues, especially in Central Europe. This is not the best winter for us. Organizing competitions requires good advance preparation, Sports and Events Manager of the International Biathlon Union IBU Daniel Böhm commented to Urheilu.
In three weeks, the Biathlon World Cup should be held in Oberhof, Germany. The view in the competition area is like summer. There’s no such thing as snow.
The Norwegian athletes who saw the pictures from the venue are worried about the situation.
– The Biathlon World Championships cannot be organized there now. It’s more about roller skiing, Norwegian star Sturla Holm Lägreid became gloomy for NRK (you switch to another service).
– I have experienced everything possible at Oberhof. The weather can change even during the race. We have to keep our fingers crossed that it will snow there before the World Championships, for the athletes Marte Olsbu Röiseland said.
The race organizer has prepared for a difficult situation. 40,000 cubic meters of snow from last winter have been stored in the ski hall.
– However, I don’t think we need it, Böhm assured NRK.
According to weather forecasts, frost and snow have been promised for the locality in the coming days. The Biathlon World Cup starts on February 8, so the situation has time to change.
Böhm says that the IBU is looking at the weather forecasts three weeks ahead.
– If we see problems, we have to communicate closely with the race organizer. The deadline is ten days before the competition event. If the race cannot be held, we have to look at alternatives.
The star athlete is worried about the world situation
The winter in Central Europe has been exceptionally warm. Of the European countries, at the moment only Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia have suitable conditions for winter sports. Nowhere else in Europe is there even frost.
In the story published by NRK over the weekend (you will switch to another service) it is said that the forecasts also look the same in February, when the World Championships in winter sports are organized in different parts of Europe.
The situation is exceptional. For example, in Warsaw, the capital of Poland, the year changed in heat of almost 20 degrees.
– We haven’t competed in any competitions on natural snow this year. It’s a shame that our sport and the world are melting away, Norway’s star biathlon skier Ingrid Landmark Tandrevold said to NRK.
Tandrevold thinks that the situation is caused by climate change. He reminds us that in the big picture the biathlon situation seems insignificant. Tandrevold is more concerned about the future of Earth.
– We see the effects of climate change up close and it’s a shock.