The 2012 World Championships in Ruhpolding are complete. Looking back there were plenty of exciting competitions and interesting moments. Here are some of my favorites:
Gold for Germany in the Women’s Relay. It is always a good thing when the host nation wins a marquee event. The fans go home happy, and it is a great experience for athletes to win gold on home soil.
Great performances from Unsung Athletes. I love it when athletes who aren’t superstars on their team have great results. I particularly enjoyed the performances of Fredrick Lindstrom and Tina Bachmann in the Mass Starts.
The Wipeouts. The downhills in Ruhpolding looked especially tough in the soft conditions. As much as I hate to see athlete’s chances get hurt by falls, they sure are entertaining to watch.
The Weather. Those sunny days sure looked nice for the spectators.
The Crowds. Speaking of spectators, it is so amazing to see how many people come to watch biathlon events in Germany. Having such a great fan base is a big asset to organizing committees. Canada just can’t compete to host major biathlon events at this point as without a fan base willing to pay to see the competitions, it is difficult to come up with revenues. Hopefully the excitement of biathlon will begin to catch fire in North America as it has in Europe.
The Mascots. Those foxes made for great mascots.
The number of nations participating. It was a great sign for the health of the sport to see so many nations participating, and not just from Europe. If the sport is going to grow in popularity it needs to be global, and it is great to see increasing participation from Asia and the World Championship level.