France stunned Norway to claim single mixed relay gold at the World Biathlon Championships in Pokljuka with their fine shooting making the difference.
With overall World Cup leaders Johannes Thingnes Boe and Tiril Eckhoff, the Norwegians had the pedigree but Boe's poor shooting proved costly as they had to settle for silver.
Instead it was Antonin Guigonnat and Julia Simon who missed just five targets across the four legs, allowing Simon to outpace Eckhoff on the final leg as she overtook the Norwegian on the final hill before stretching away on the descent to win by 2.8 seconds.
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Norway had been playing catch-up because of four misses from Boe on the third lap, and instead it looked like a battle between France and Italy for the gold.
But Dorothea Wierer blew the opportunity, falling apart on the final target and having to do a penalty loop which pushed them out of the medals altogether.
That allowed the team of Sebastian Samuelsson and Hanna Oeberg to came through and take the bronze medal, 22.6 seconds behind the French.
The World Championship action continues on Saturday with the men's and women's relays before concluding with Sunday's mass starts.
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