Boise's Studebaker frustrated but looking ahead
By Kevin Tresolini, USA TODAY Sports
KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia – Sara Studebaker felt as if she’d done only half the job Friday at the Winter Olympics, which doesn’t cut it in the two-pronged biathlon.
She had a 55th-place finish in the 15K to prove it.
The 29-year-old Studebaker, from Boise, felt her shooting let her down on a mild, overcast day at the Laura Cross Country Ski and Biathlon Center.
“I feel like it’s been a real frustrating couple races for me shootingwise,” she said. “I’m a good shooter and I have not indicated that here, which is frustrating, for sure.
“My skiing is exactly where I want it to be, and I couldn’t capitalize on that, so it’s a little bit rough.”
Four missed shots cost Studebaker a minute penalty each and her final time was 48:54.1, even though she felt shooting conditions were conducive to a strong effort. She termed it an “easy range” with minimal effect from the weather.
She had earlier finished 44th in the 7.5K sprint on Sunday and 51st in the 10K pursuit on Tuesday.
But the 15K had been her best event at the 2010 Vancouver Games, in which she finished 34th.
“This is a tough, tough course,” she said. “That’ll give me a boost, for sure, to feel like the skiing wasn’t as hard.”
Studebaker looked ahead positively.
“We’ve got the relay coming up, and that’s a great event because you can really help motivate each other with the team aspect,” said Studebaker, who was captain of the 2007 Dartmouth cross-country ski team that won the college’s first NCAA title in more than 30 years.
“We’re all skiing really well and we had a really good result here today [Heather Dreissigacker getting 23rd]. We have a solid team and, the last year, we’ve been able to all pull together on the same day so, hopefully, we can do that again.”
Kevin Tresolini writes for The News Journal (Wilmington, Del.).