The origins of competitive biathlon can be traced back to the 18th century. In 1767, the first biathlon competition between border patrols of Sweden and Norway was recorded.
Border patrols were also the first who promoted biathlon at the Olympics in 1924.
The first Summer Biathlon World Championship, on the other hand, were only held in 1996 in Hochfilzen, Austria. The races were staged as a combination of cross-country running and shooting. Since then, the performance level and the popularity of summer biathlon have increased significantly.
At the 2006 World Championship in Ufa/Russia, roller ski biathlon premiered at an international level. The WC in Ufa were also the first to be aired live on television.
Nowadays, the annual race calendar for summer biathlon contains not only World Championship but also European Championships and IBU International Cups in summer biathlon with three races each for roller ski and cross-country biathletes.
After touring through Russia (2000), Italy (2003) and Finland (2005), the World Championship will finally arrive in Germany in 2009.