The JOKA Biathlon World Team Challenge (BWTC) returns to its original location as a unique guest event. The popular mixed race for ten international duos will be held this year on 28 December 2020 in Ruhpolding. The World Team Challenge was hosted for the last time in 2001 in Ruhpolding. Since then it has been held in the Veltins-Arena in Gelsenkirchen. Due to the Covid19 pandemic, however, the traditional event had to be postponed by one year, to December 2021. Whether spectators will be allowed to attend the special edition in Ruhpolding in the stadium is currently still an open question. But what is certain is that Denise Herrmann and Benedikt Doll have already confirmed their participation as the first well-known team.
"We are really happy that after numerous coordination discussions we have now found this good special solution for the Biathlon World Team Challenge," explained DSV President Dr. Franz Steinle. "At the same time, we have thus ensured that a top-class biathlon race can take place in Ruhpolding despite the current difficult conditions. Of course, we would have liked to celebrate a big biathlon festival in the sold-out stadium in Gelsenkirchen. However, I think, we have found an excellent alternative with Ruhpolding, especially when we consider the sportive aspect. This way the biathlon fans can once again look forward to an attractive TV sport experience right after the Christmas holidays. I like to express my sincere thanks to all the responsible teams in Gelsenkirchen, to the biathlon fans in Ruhpolding, the broadcasting TV stations and the responsible agencies, who together with us found and organized this solution."
The positive response to the latest decision shows that the invitation race is not only highly regarded by fans but also by the athletes. With Denise Herrmann and Benedikt Doll, the first renowned duo has already confirmed their participation for the special edition of the Biathlon World Team Challenge. Further negotiations with international and national top stars are on the verge of conclusion.
For the JOKA Biathlon World Team Challenge the wheel has in a way turned full circle after 20 years: "I am happy that we can go back to the place where everything began", said WTC inventor and organizer Herbert Fritzenwenger. "The fact that the Biathlon World Team Challenge can be held in Ruhpolding this year as a unique guest event is due to the excellent cooperation of all responsible persons, sponsors and the german TV station ZDF. This once again reflects the good cooperation and reliability in the biathlon sport. For us, the World Team Challenge is not only a consolation for the World Cup, which unfortunately cannot take place in the Chiemgau Arena this year, but at the same time it is also a great conclusion to the 100th anniversary of SC Ruhpolding."
The World Team Challenge...
is a biathlon competition that has been held in the Veltins-Arena in Gelsenkirchen since 2002 shortly before the end of the year. Previously, the invitation competition was always held in Ruhpolding, Upper Bavaria. The event at Gelsenkirchen, planned for 28 December 2020, had to be postponed to December 2021 due to the restrictions imposed by the Corona pandemic. However, the exact date between Christmas and New Year cannot be yet determined.