Dreams are on the line for Italy’s Dorothea Wierer. The three time Olympian is still on the hunt for gold after missing the mark on Feb. 5 in her best Olympic event, the mixed 4x6km relay. She is Italy’s most decorated biathlete.
Wierer participated in the 2014 and 2018 Winter Olympics and won bronze both times in the mixed relay. But, when she went for a repeat of her medal-winning performances in her best biathlon event at the 2022 Winter Games, the Italian team couldn't find the same magic. They ended the competition in ninth place and Wierer missed two targets, which gave way to Norway’s gold-medal finish.
Wierer was the 2020-2021 individual World Cup champion and has yet to win an Olympic medal in an individual event. Her victorious 2021-2022 season catapulted her ahead of second-placed Dzinara Alimbekave of Belarus and third-place Anais Chevalier-Bouchet of France.
Besides her first place World Cup standing, Wierer originally put Italy on the biathlon map when she won bronze at the 2013 World Championships. Now 31, Wierer is looking for redemption in the women’s 7.5km sprint after placing 18th and missing out on the podium in the women's 15km event. The sprint and the women’s mass start are her next best chances to win a medal. Depending on how well she does in the sprint, it will dictate her starting place in the pursuit event. She is a rapid-fire shooter in the prone position with 85% accuracy and makes up for deficits in the shooting range with the speed she has on her skis.
As a big believer in receiving more luck in her competitions from hard work, Wierer has been focusing on being more consistent in her shooting and skiing skills throughout the season. She will make her way back onto the biathlon course on Feb. 11 at 4:00 a.m. ET in the women's 7.5km sprint.