Loginov leads Russia past Fourcade and France to relay gold & double at IBU World Cup
Russian biathlete Alexander Loginov produced an astonishing performance to power past ardent critic, Frenchman Martin Fourcade, and cemented gold for Russia's men in the IBU World Cup men's 4 x 7.5 km relay on Sunday.
With the victory, the Russian men's team of Loginov, Dmitry Malyshko, Evgeniy Garanichev and Maxim Tsvetkov completed a unique double, after Ekaterina Yurlova-Percht and teammates Evgeniya Pavlova, Margarita Vasileva, and Larisa Kuklina had clinched relay gold on the same day in Oberhof, Germany.
It meant Russia clinched a double in the relay event for the first time in 13 years.
But the biggest cheer today will surely be within @russianbiathlon who win both the women's and the men's relay in #OBE19Join us live for the flower ceremony in a little while on https://t.co/bk5aBBso9Qpic.twitter.com/nHGw6azX0l— IBU World Cup (@IBU_WC) January 13, 2019
Золотой дубль! Поддержав российских девушек, мужчины выиграли свою эстафету на этапе Кубка мира в Оберхофе. За команду выступили Максим Цветков, Евгений Гараничев, Дмитрий Малышко и Александр Логинов🇷🇺💪Подробнее: https://t.co/wG9KsRp2fjpic.twitter.com/PndiyCGm5u— Союз биатлонистов RU (@russianbiathlon) January 13, 2019
Екатерина Юрлова-Перхт сегодня исполнила свою мечту - финишировала с флагом России🇷🇺 и невероятно счастливыми сделала всех нас! Спасибо, Катя! Спасибо, команда!❤️❤️❤️ pic.twitter.com/4sQp3x97e8— Союз биатлонистов RU (@russianbiathlon) January 13, 2019
Russia are currently second in the International Biathlon Union (IBU) World Cup intermediate standings after two competitions, behind overall leaders Sweden.
Russia's Loginov said moments after the victory: "When I crossed the finish line I felt pride in the team first of all," he told Russian broadcaster Match TV.
"It is, at the very least, extremely nice to achieve such a victory today. The guys coped really well in such winds. I tried hard not to let everyone down. Thanks also to the women's team who stayed and supported us," he added.Also on rt.com ‘He's made a comeback, show some respect’: 'King of Biathlon' Bjorndalen defends Russia’s Loginov
The relay double made it a hat-trick of golds so far for Russia, adding to Loginov's personal victory in the 10km sprint on Friday. Second place went to France, led by five-time Olympic champion Fourcade, who battled it out with Loginov for first place on the last leg.
Loginov's initial sprint triumph was mired in an anti-Russian opprobrium, not least from Fourcade, who called the victory a "disgrace" and refused to even "respect" the 26-year-old's achievement.Also on rt.com 'I’d like to personally meet & discuss our issues': Loginov responds to Fourcade criticism
Fourcade took issue with Loginov's failure to apologize to peers after the Russian tested positive for doping in 2014, despite the athlete serving a two-year suspension.
Loginov was, however, supported by some members of the biathlon family, including 'Biathlon King' Ole Einar Bjoerndalen, who highlighted the need to treat Loginov "with respect" in his comeback.