Germany's Simon Schempp maintained his excellent run of form of late as he stormed to victory in the men's 10 kilometres sprint victory at the sixth International Biathlon Union (IBU) World Cup event in Antholz, Italy today.
Schempp had to tumble for the line to secure the win in the 15km event in Ruhpolding, Germany, at the weekend, but he had no such problems on Italian snow as he romped to a deserved victory.
He finished in a time of 23min 18.8sec with clean shooting, ahead of Russian Evgeniy Garanichev, who was second 14 seconds back.
Slovenia's Jakov Fak took third while Switzerland's Benjamin Weger claimed fourth, with one penalty, 20.9 seconds adrift.
As well as being Schempp's second win a row, it was also the fourth time in his last four races that he has achieved a podium finish, and the result strengthens the German's grip on third place in the overall World Cup standings.
However he has managed to close the gap on overall leader Martin Fourcade to just 44 points, while Russian Anton Shipulin is second with 507 points.
"This is crazy; the last three races were really good for me," Schempp said.
"I think I made good progress in my training over Christmas.
"I am really happy about January."
On what was dubbed the best day for weather in any World Cup event so far, Norwegian legend and International Olympic Committee member Ole Einar Bjørndalen started the quickest, with a clean fast prone stage.
Despite a single shooting penalty he edged into an initial early lead.
Shipulin however fought back and seized the advantage, before Schempp, clearly buoyed by his success in Germany, shot clean and he opened up a huge 31-second lead over the Russian.
That pattern continued throughout as Schempp kept up his speed which proved too strong for the rest of the field as he eventually crossed the line 14 seconds ahead of nearest challenger Garanichev, while overall leader Fourcade languished in 25th place.
January 2015: Schempp claims tightest of victories at IBU Biathlon World Cup
January 2015: Boe eases to comfortable sprint victory at IBU Biathlon World Cup
January 2015: Horn earns first biathlon World Cup victory
January 2015: Norway edge Germany on final leg to claim biathlon World Cup relay spoils
January 2015: Czech Republic dominates relay once again at IBU Biathlon World Cup