Texan and U.S. biathlete Andy Soule was the first man in history to win a medal for the U.S. in the 2010 Paralympic Games and the first ever medal for the U.S. Paralympic Biathlon team on the opening day of competition. He placed fifth in the qualifier that morning and came from behind after a penalty to take the bronze. Reports Allison Frederick :
“After I passed [Sergey] Shilov, I just hammered it and didn’t look back,” said Soule. “It felt just incredible. I’ve had World Cup wins and World Cup podiums before, but there’s nothing quite like this – in this atmosphere, in front of the crowd here with everyone watching.”
Top-ranked Irek Zaripov of Russia won gold with a time of 9:51.00, while Ukraine’s Iurii Kostiuk crossed the finish line +47.9 for silver. Soule, who entered competition ranked fourth overall in International Paralympic Committee World Cup points, posted a final time of 10:53.01.