After a dominating performance in the men’s 20K individual, today could have been a mere confirmation effort for Fourcade. However, local favorite Lindström got in his way and made it a tough fight for the top spot. Fourcade had a 4.5 second lead over the Swedish star after the prone stage, but that changed after Fourcade picked up a penalty in standing and Lindström shot clean. Now the tables turned; the Yellow Bib was 6.8 seconds back. At the 8.7K split, Lindström was still 6.7 seconds ahead. Then, in the final 1.3K, it shifted back to advantage Fourcade, as Lindström fell and ended up behind Fourcade at the finish. Several others including Burke shot clean, but could not match Fourcade’s skiing. Many times during the season, sprint results find the top 10 stacked like books in a library, separated by a few seconds. That was not the case here Fourcade, Lindström and then third place more than 24 seconds back. Although his performance was not flawless, Fourcade again proved to be the best man at the finish line but maybe not in the stadium..
Fourcade admitted that even though he won in the end, Lindström may have been better than him today. "I was a bit lucky. I was disappointed for Fredrik since he fell on the last lap. We both know he would have won if had not fallen."