Jody Barber Leads Canadians in Paralympic Biathlon

WHISTLER, BC, March 17 /CNW Telbec/ - Canada's Jody Barber continues to fight her way closer to her first Paralympic podium result after finished in seventh spot in women's 12.5-kilometre biathlon standing competition on Wednesday.

Barber, who captured her first World Cup podium finish in 2009, clocked a time of 51 minutes 6.5 seconds for her seventh-place finish.

"I'm really happy with my race and how I paced it out there," said Barber. "On my final shooting, my rifle jammed. I couldn't see anything and it was all black and we had to fiddle around with that for a while and then used a spare which I hadn't zeroed in on and it was right-handed so it was extremely awkward for me. I miraculously shot clean with that, but definitely lost time there."

The individual distance race in biathlon puts an emphasis on shooting, as a one-minute penalty is added to the athlete's final time with every missed shot. Other disciplines have a penalty loop athletes are forced to ski which takes less time.

Missing two shots, Barber finished well back of Oleksandra Kononova, of the Ukraine, who stomped the field with a winning time of 46:01.4 in the women's standing division.

Four other Canadians also suited up on Wednesday at Whistler Paralympic Park.

Robbi Weldon and her guide Brian Berry, both of Thunder Bay, Ont., finished ninth in the women's visually impaired race with a time of 59:58.0. Alexei Novikov and Jamie Stirling, of Ottawa, finished 10h in the men's 12.5-kilometre visually impaired race at 56:30.2. Mark Arendz, of Springton, P.E.I., was 16th in the men's standing division at 49:52.6, while Lou Gibson, of Langley, B.C., was 18th at 53:38.8 in the men's sit-ski race.

"This race puts so much focus on shooting and it is so costly if you miss those shots," said Alexei Novikov. "The crowd was really loud out there and you could hear them cheering coming into the stadium which gives you so much energy. You just have to be careful to control your pace."

The Nordic events continue on Thursday at Whistler Paralympic Park with the classic-ski races.

COMPLETE RESULTS: http://www.vancouver2010.com/paralympic-games/schedule---results/

About the Canadian Paralympic Committee

The Canadian Paralympic Committee (CPC) is a non-profit, private organisation with 43 member sports organisations dedicated to strengthening the Paralympic Movement. The CPC is responsible for creating an optimal high-performance environment for the Canadian Paralympic athletes to win at Paralympic and ParaPanAmerican Games. By supporting Canadian Paralympic athletes and promoting their success, the CPC inspires all Canadians with a physical disability to get involved in sport through programs delivered by its member organisations. For more information, visit www.paralympic.ca.

Follow the Canadian Paralympic Committee by becoming a fan on Facebook, and following on Twitter.

SOURCE Canadian Paralympic Committee (CPC)

For further information: For further information: Chris Dornan, Media and Public Relations, Cross Country Canada, T: (281) 703-4394


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