Martin Fourcade leads the overall men's Biathlon World Cup standings ©Getty Images

Fans are set to return to the stands when the International Biathlon Union (IBU) World Cup circuit resumes in Kontiolahti this weekend.

Spectators were banned from attending the last World Cup event in Nové Město na Moravě because of the coronavirus outbreak, which has had a significant impact on the sporting calendar.

But the public will be allowed into the competition in the Finnish municipality, the penultimate World Cup of the season. 

The race for the overall titles in the men's and women's events is set to intensify at the competition, which begins tomorrow and concludes on Sunday (March 15). 

A three-way battle has emerged for the men's crown, with French star Martin Fourcade, the five-time Olympic and 13-time world champion, leading the way on 853 points.

Defending champion Johannes Thingnes Bø of Norway is only 43 points adrift in second after winning the sprint and mass start events in Nové Město.

Quentin Fillon Maillet of France sits third, a further 10 points behind his compatriot.

In the women's event, Dorothea Wierer of Italy holds a 69-point lead over Norway's Tiril Eckhoff at the top of the standings.

Sweden's Hanna Öberg is just two points behind Eckhoff.

Sprint and pursuit events for the men and women are set to be held in Kontiolahti, as well as single mixed relay and mixed relay races.