Aussies claim gold medals

Mt Hotham Falls Creek - - FRONT PAGE -

BIATH­LETES from across the state and the coun­try hit Mt Hotham’s Whiskey Flat Range over two week­ends at the end of July and midAu­gust for the Vic­to­rian and Aus­tralian Cham­pi­onships.

One of the big­gest fields in years turned out for the Vic­to­rian Cham­pi­onships on July 25-26 with a nearly 40 ath­letes brav­ing cold blus­tery wind and con­stant snow fall.

In­cluded in the field were four ath­letes from Italy and Switzer­land who have spent the win­ter train­ing at Mt Hotham.

De­spite the chal­leng­ing con­di­tions on both days there was plenty of good com­pe­ti­tion while all races were en­joyed by com­peti­tors.

Win­ner of the Men’s Open In­di­vid­ual on Satur­day was Paolo Rodi­gari, he was joined on the podium by first placed Aus­tralian Damon Mor­ton and another Ital­ian in Emil Bormetti in third.

Win­ner of the Women’s Open In­di­vid­ual on Satur­day was Jil­lian Colebourn, fol­lowed by Switzer­land’s Laura Caduff and Camilla Bor­molini of Italy.

On Sun­day, the Men’s Open Sprint was won by Damon Mor­ton, fol­lowed by Paolo Rodi­gari while Emil Bormetti claimed another third.

In the Women’s Sprint Laura Caduff im­proved on her per­for­mances from a day ear­lier by com­ing through in first, as did Camilla Bor­molini in sec­ond while Jil­lian Colebourn rounded out the podium.

Un­like for the Vic­to­rian Cham­pi­onships Mother Na­ture put on glo­ri­ous week­ends weather for the na­tional event with sun­shine for much of the two days as well as per­fect snow con­di­tions.

The Aus­tralian Cham­pi­onships was also one of the largest and strong­est fields as­sem­bled in a num­ber of years with Aus­tralia’s best joined again by the Ital­ian and Swiss ath­letes.

Three gen­er­a­tions from Aus­tralian Biathlon’s found­ing fam­i­lies the Cran­age and Cullen’s of Wodonga also took part.

All three claimed gold medals in Satur­day’s In­di­vid­ual events with Bob Cran­age win­ning the Vet­eran Class, daugh­ter Lynn-Maree Cullen the Women Mas­ters and her daugh­ter Jorja Cullen the U13 Women.

Damon Mor­ton won the Open Men In­di­vid­ual and was fol­lowed by Daniel Walker and Paolo Rodi­gari.

Third Aus­tralian was Dyl­lan Harmer.

The Open Women was dom­i­nated by the same three from the Vic­to­rian ti­tles with Camilla Bor­molini first, Laura Caduff, sec­ond and Jil­lian Colebourn third.

In Sun­day’s sprints Damon Mor­ton added a sec­ond gold with the win while Emil Bormetti placed sec­ond and Paolo Rodi­gari again third.

Sec­ond and third Aus­tralian’s were Daniel Walker and Dyl­lan Harmer.

The women’s podium in the sprints was the same as the day be­fore with Camilla Bor­molini claim­ing a sec­ond gold, Laura Caduff another sec­ond while Jil­lian Colebourn took bronze again.

FAM­ILY AF­FAIR: Three gen­er­a­tions of Aus­tralian biath­letes took part in the Na­tional Cham­pi­onships in Au­gust (from left) Lynn-Ma­ree Cullen, her daugh­ter Jorja Cullen and Lynn-Ma­ree’s fa­ther Bob Cran­age. All three claimed gold medals in their races.

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