A "topping out" ceremony has been held at a new building in Hochfilzen ©IBU

A "topping out" ceremony has been held at a new administrative building which has been built in Hochfilzen ahead of the 2017 International Biathlon Union (IBU) World Championships.

The five-story building overlooks the finishing area at the Austrian venue, and will house offices, data-timing rooms, commentator cabins and VIP areas.

Josef Geisler, the deputy state governor for the Tirol region who is responsible for sport, was in attendance alongside Hochfilzen Mayor Konrad Walk.

Austrian Ski Federation secretary general Dr Klaus Leistner, who is also an IBU vice president, was also present alongside members of the country's biathlon team.

The event marked the installation of the final beam in the building, with the Austrian athletes holding a training demonstration at the venue.

Dominik Landertinger, who lives in Hochfilzen and boasts three Winter Olympic medals, said: "The stadium is world-class. 

"Spectators will enjoy the new main building and grandstand seats. 

Dominik Landertinger praised his home venue ©Getty Images
Dominik Landertinger praised his home venue ©Getty Images

"We, as athletes, also enjoy the improvements like roller track extension, an ultra-modern treadmill and the indoor shooting range, which we can use in any weather.

"Seeing these changes, I feel the excitement building for World Championships."

More than 52,000 tickets have been sold for the event, which will take place between February 9 and 19, in the last seven weeks.

Organising Committee leader Franz Berger said: "In general we are on a good way and on time. 

"The stadium construction including the main building is on the schedule and will be finished in October. 

"The accommodations for the teams, guests and media are fixed. 

"On the logistics side we are working on finalising the plans with the schedule already set. 

"At the moment we are planning the opening and medal ceremonies. 

"With six months to go, we are at the 75 per cent stage in our preparations."