Natalie Wilkie earned five podium finishes in Para-Nordic events at the World Cup in Vuokatti, Finland, including a gold-medal win in biathlon on Sunday, Dec. 18, 2022. (Nordic Canada/Facebook photo)

Salmon Arm’s Natalie Wilkie earns five medals with Team Canada at World Cup

Last medal, a gold, earned in biathlon event

  • Dec. 21, 2022 12:00 p.m.

Salmon Arm’s Natalie Wilkie struck gold while competing with Team Canada in the World Cup opener in Vuokatti, Finland.

The Canadian Para-Nordic contingent picked up 22 medals in the event, five of those earned by Wilkie. On Sunday, Dec. 18, the 21-year-old won a gold medal in biathlon, with a time of 24:21.1 in the women’s standing category.

“Vuokatti has been a great World Cup opener for me,” Wilkie told Nordiq Canada. “I didn’t expect to have such good results, but I’m very happy with how things have turned out.

“It’s always good knowing where I stack up against my competitors this early in the season especially with World Championships coming up in January.”

Wilkie’s first gold-medal victory in biathlon happened Dec. 13 at the World Cup, with a time of 46:32.2 in the women’s 12.5-kilometre individual start race. She also earned three silver medals and a bronze.

But the cross-country skier said Sunday’s race was a highlight for her, telling Nordiq Canada, “I’ve struggled to shoot quickly in the range, so my focus today was on skiing hard right off the start to try and make up time. I really felt the speed on my skis today and it carried over into my shooting as well. I was excited to see some great results from the whole team.”

Read more: Salmon Arm Paralympic skier nabs silver medal at World Cup opener in Finland

Read more: Salmon Arm Paralympian Natalie Wilkie reflects on expectations, success at 2022 Games
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