The 2014 IBU Youth/Junior Biathlon World Championships in Presque Isle are just over a month away, and organizers say more athletes than expected will be competing in the event.

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The International Biathlon Union (IBU), is a federation of 66 nations, each recruiting their own biathletes.  Event director Jane Towle said originally they expected  25 to 28 federations to compete, and now there are 35.

"With this increase in participating federations, the competition now includes over 450 biathletes, coaches and support staff," Towle stated. "This will be one of the largest World Juniors ever hosted, and we are thrilled it’s right here in the United States.”

The Nordic Heritage Sport Club is building on its success from the 2006 Biathlon World Junior Championships in hosting the world class event from February 28th to March 7th.

Club President Nathan Berry said, “ What an exciting time for northern Maine to be preparing for this event - the same time our own Russell Currier is named to the U.S. Olympic team.”

“Thousands of volunteer hours spent at the Nordic Heritage Sport Club over the last decade have allowed us to be center stage for a major international sporting event, and I could not be more proud of everyone involved,” said Berry.