The Associated Press KRASNAYA POLYANA (AP)—Martin Fourcade has a long way to go to match Ole Einar Bjoerndalen’s record of seven Olympic gold medals in biathlon. He’s off to a good start, though.
Fourcade earned his second gold in four days at the Sochi Games, overcoming one penalty minute to win the men’s 20-kilometer individual race on Thursday.
The Frenchman, who won the overall World Cup title the past two years and tops this season’s standings after four victories, is getting close to dominating the sport the way Bjoerndalen did for much of the past decade. Retired French great Raphael Poiree has already dubbed Fourcade as “the new Bjoerndalen.”
“It’s an honor to be compared to Bjoerndalen,” Fourcade said. “But I am not thinking about becoming part of biathlon history. I am just happy when I can share my victories with friends and teammates.”
Fourcade, 25, who also won the 12.5K pursuit on Monday, already had a silver medal from the mass start event four years ago in Vancouver and five world titles, including in the 20K individual last year.
He finished Thursday’s race in 49 minutes, 31.7 seconds after missing one target in his second shooting.
“All the mistakes are so costly so you had to be in top form to win,” said Fourcade. “I knew I could still win despite that mistake. It was a tight victory.”
Erik Lesser of Germany shot cleanly and finished 12.2 seconds behind to take silver, his first individual medal at a major championship. Yevgeny Garanichev of Russia earned bronze, 34.5 off the lead after faulting once in his final shooting.