The 43rd Biathlon World Championships were held in Pyeongchang, South Korea from February 13 to February 22, 2009. It was the first time that the Biathlon World Championships were held in Asia (outside Asian Russia).
There were a total of 11 competitions: sprint, pursuit, individual, mass start, and relay races for men and women, and the relatively new mixed relay. All the events during this championships also counted for the 2008–09 Biathlon World Cup season.
Before the championships even started there was controversy with three Russian biathletes being sent home, for having failed drugs tests during a previous round of the World Cup in Ostersund, Sweden. Then the first day's competition was only made possible after the efforts of over 500 volunteers, working overnight managed to re-lay the competition tracks with man-made snow after all the natural snow had disappeared after unusual weather conditions melted it all away.