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Stina Nilsson Headed to Beijing Olympics

Only in her second season as a biathlete, Stina Nilsson secured the last spot on the Swedish biathlon team headed to the 2022 Olympics in Beijing.

Photo: Thomas Bachun/Bildbyrån

Stina Nilsson (SWE) during the relay at the IBU biathlon World Cup in Rupholding (GER) on Friday.

Sunday morning, the Swedish Olympic Committee announced that Stina Nilsson is selected for the 2022 Olympic biathlon team. It is less than two years ago that Nilsson switched from cross-country skiing to biathlon. 

“I am super excited about going to the Olympics, especially since I had such a great time at the relay on Friday,” Nilsson says to NRK prior to the start of the pursuit at the World Cup in Rupholding on Sunday. 

Nilsson believes her performance in the relay at the World Cup in Rupholding, Germany, on Friday was the event that tipped the scales in her favor. There, she raced the second leg for Sweden, and helped the team to second place, despite missing Elvira and Hanna Öberg as well as Linn Persson, three of Sweden’s top ranked biathletes. 

“I definitely think the relay was a contributing factor, but I’ve done a lot of good races this season, including Hochfilzen (in December),” Nilsson says. 

No specific role
Currently, Nilsson has not been named to the lineup for any specific events during the Beijing Olympics. But for Nilsson, simply going to the Olympics is the most important. 

“We have such an incredibly strong team. There are four girls ranked among the top 11 in the world, and our B-team finishes second in a World Cup relay. That says a bit about how hard it is to earn a spot in our team. I don’t take anything for granted. But I am going to China to learn as much as I can,” Nilsson says. 

For Nilsson, the Winter Games in Beijing will be her third Olympics. 

Nilsson has five Olympic medals in cross-country skiing: Four from the 2018 Olympics in Pyeong Chang, South Korea, where she won the gold medal in the sprint and the bronze medal in the 30-kilometer, as well as two silver medals from the relay and the team sprint. At the 2014 Olympics in Sotchi, Russia, which was her first Olympics, Nilsson earned the bronze medal in the team sprint. 

Additionally, Nilsson has seven FIS cross-country world championships medals, including five silver medals. 

She won the first three silver medals at the 2015 World Championships in Falun, Sweden, the next from the 2017 world championships in Lahti, Finland, and the final silver medal from the 2019 world championships in Seefeld. 

Combined, these silver medals earned her the nickname “Silver-Stina.” 

Finally, at the 2019 World Championships, Nilsson also took home two gold medals. 

It was following the 2019 season that Stina Nilsson switched from cross-country skiing to biathlon. 

The Beijing Olympics take place from February 4 to 20, 2022. 

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