Shipulin holds off Fourcade to give Russia biathlon relay title

Biathlon - IBU World Championships - Men 4 x 7.5 km Relay - Hochfilzen, Austria - 18/2/17 - Anton Shipulin of Russia leaves the shooting range. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger
Biathlon - IBU World Championships - Men 4 x 7.5 km Relay - Hochfilzen, Austria - 18/2/17 - Anton Shipulin of Russia and Dominik Landertinger of Austria in action. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger
Biathlon - IBU World Championships - Men 4 x 7.5 km Relay - Hochfilzen, Austria - 18/2/17 - Alexey Volkov of Russia, Maxim Tsvetkov of Russia, Anton Babikov of Russia and Anton Shipulin of Russia after finishing. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Biathlon - IBU World Championships - Men 4 x 7.5 km Relay - Hochfilzen, Austria - 18/2/17 - Alexey Volkov of Russia, Maxim Tsvetkov of Russia, Anton Babikov of Russia and Anton Shipulin of Russia on the podium. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger

HOCHFILZEN, Austria, (Reuters) - Anton Shipulin was too strong on the skis as he held off great rival Martin Fourcade of France to give Russia the gold medal in the men's 4x7.5km relay at the biathlon world championships on Saturday.

Shipulin missed a shot in the standing position in the final relay while Fourcade, who started his relay in third place some 12 seconds off the pace, hit all the targets.

But Shipulin appeared more at ease on the skis and he beat his great rival by 5.8 seconds to take the title with team mates Alexey Volkov, Maxim Tsvetkov and Anton Babikov.

Austria claimed third place while defending champions Norway were never in the mix, finishing eighth.

Russia have had troubled preparations as the International Biathlon Union (IBU) told them to give up the right to host the 2021 world championships amid doping concerns.

Eleven-times world champion Fourcade, who has been leading calls to eradicate doping from the sport, and Shipulin were involved in controversy last week.

The Frenchman walked off the podium following the mixed relay after Shipulin and his team mate Aleksandr Loginov refused to shake hands with him following an incident during the race.

The world championships end on Sunday with the men's and women's mass start events.

(Reporting by Julien Pretot, editing by Ed Osmond)

Must Read

Bargain shoppers dominate quiet NHL trade...

Mar 2, 2017

US-ICEHOCKEY-NHL-TRADES:Bargain shoppers dominate quiet NHL trade deadline day

Austrian court convicts 8 Iraqi men in tourist's...

Mar 2, 2017

An Austrian court found eight Iraqi nationals guilty of gang-raping a German tourist on New Year's...

Austrian parties agree on parliamentary inquiry...

Mar 3, 2017

US-AIRBUS-AUSTRIA-INQUIRY:Austrian parties agree on parliamentary inquiry into Eurofighter deal

Euro zone investor morale hits almost 10-year high

Mar 6, 2017

US-EUROZONE-ECONOMY-SENTIX:Euro zone investor morale hits almost 10-year high

Libyan oil guard head says asked to protect oil...

Mar 7, 2017

US-LIBYA-SECURITY-OIL:Libyan oil guard head says asked to protect oil ports after clashes

People also read these

Biathlon: Russians sing anthem alone as...

Feb 19, 2017

US-BIATHLON-WORLD-ANTHEM:Biathlon: Russians sing anthem alone as organizers play wrong tune

Leader of Germany's far-right party meets Putin...

Feb 21, 2017

US-GERMANY-ELECTION-AFD:Leader of Germany's far-right party meets Putin allies in Moscow

Austrian court backs extradition of Ukraine...

Feb 21, 2017

US-UKRAINE-FIRTASH:Austrian court backs extradition of Ukraine businessman Firtash to U.S.

Weaker euro helps propel euro zone factory growth...

Mar 1, 2017

US-EUROZONE-ECONOMY-PMI:Weaker euro helps propel euro zone factory growth to six-year high

East Libyan forces resume strikes against rivals...

Mar 5, 2017

US-LIBYA-SECURITY-OIL:East Libyan forces resume strikes against rivals near oil ports

Sign up now!