German reign continues with second Frenzel-win
Again, it was Eric Frenzel who perfected a glory weekend in Lillehammer by taking the third victory in as many days. He finished 10.8 seconds ahead of his team- and roommate Björn Kircheisen after the duo had demonstrated the perfect teamwork at the head of the field. Behind the two, Jørgen Graabak finished third (+23.4) and took the remaining spot on the podium.
Takehiro Watanabe was the leading man after the jumping event. The young Japanese landed at 138 metres and his point total of 145.3 points gave him 5 seconds of head start on superstar Eric Frenzel who had 139 metres and 144 points to show for. Björn Kircheisen continued with his fantastic jumping performances on rank three (138.5 m; 143.6 p.), closely followed by Akito Watabe on rank four. He and Kircheisen started into the race seven and eleven seconds after Watanabe.
Not to be underestimated were Norwegians Jørgen Graabak and Magnus Krog who delivered on the jumping hill today. Graabak was a hot contender for the podium with 137 metres (140.5 p.) and just 19 seconds to make up but also teammate Magnus Krog as well as Germans Johannes Rydzek and Fabian Rießle had good positions with time behinds of 54, 51 and one minute and one second to catch up. So at the start of the race it looked like the big fight between Germany and Norway was back on in the fifth event of the season.
Following the race during the first lap, it became clear quite quickly that the long-term roommates Eric Frenzel and Björn Kircheisen had something against a big fight for the podium results. Almost a picture-book example for perfect teamwork, Frenzel and Kircheisen exchanged the lead every 500 metres and worked in perfect sync to keep the fast pursuers off their back. Jørgen Graabak tried his utmost but was not able to close the 20-second gap to the leaders in the end.
Japan’s Akito Watabe was on course for the fourth rank again but was overtaken by Rydzek and Rießle on the last lap, so that it was four Germans among the first five athletes in the end. Behind these five, the rest of the Top Ten was more evenly spread than in yesterday’s event with Finn Eero Hirvonen securing another great seventh position, Francois Braud capturing rank eight for France, Bryan Fletcher with a long overdue Top Ten finish for Team USA and Austrian youngster David Pommer extending his impressive record of Top Ten positions in this season with another tenth place.
Ski Jumping Results