The Jurassian Quentin Fillon-Maillet, 28, has been the new headliner of French biathlon since the retirement of Martin Fourcade. Long in the shadow of one of the greatest biathletes in the history of the sport, the native of Saint-Laurent-en-Grandvaux has decided to emancipate himself since the departure of the Catalan.
Much more present than before in the media, Fillon-Maillet, who has created a web series called “En ligne de mire“, in which he tells the story behind the scenes of his preparation and his season, clearly shows his ambition. This winter, it will be the big crystal globe awarded to the winner of the general classification of the World Cup or nothing. Behind Johannes Thingnes Boe, he effectively acts, like the Swede Sebastian Samuelsson or Tarjei Boe, as a contender for the coronation. “I am looking for excellence, for the first place. I don’t feel like hiding behind some small goals like I’ve done before. I hope to have a great preparation and arrive with increased potential before the year of the Games, “he explains in the presentation episode of his web series.
It is that Quentin Fillon-Maillet, also ambassador of the Jura department in a video, can draw on a solid experience in the biathlon world cup. Very solid on the skis and patient on the shooting range (86% success last winter), he has a whopping twenty podiums on the world circuit. His highlight, for the moment, remains his victories in early 2019 in the mass-start of Antholz (Italy) and the pursuit of Soldier Hollow (United States). He also won at the end of that same year in Pokljuka, Slovenia. It will be this stadium that will host the 2021 World Championships, which will largely inspire the ambitious Jurassien.
Together with his team mates, Émilien Jacquelin, Martin Fourcade and Simon Desthieux, he became World Champion in Antholz in February 2020 in Relay.
During this edition of the World Championships, he did not go far from being crowned in the sprint… only beaten by Russian Alexander Loginov. Third in the world in 2019 and 2020, he has never shone at the Olympics. His only Olympic experience, in 2018 in PyeongChang, was a nightmare (48th in the sprint, 44th in the pursuit and 29th in the mass-start) from which he had to recover, with success in view of his results since. From the sprint of Kontiolahti (Finland), disputed a month later, he returned to the podium… not to want to let go.
‘’Quentin is an athlete who has enormous talent and merit. He’s doing things well’’, said Martin Fourcade, who has followed his progress and his arrival at the highest level. ‘’I had this dream of becoming a top-level athlete, but when I looked at the guys from the France team, it seemed like an impossible mission’’, Fillon-Maillet told Nordic Magazine. Now, I play sports every day, I live off my passion and that is priceless. I am happy with the progress made.’’ A path that could lead him to the pinnacle of his sport.