Jason Lamy Chappuis wins the first gold medal at Val di Fiemme!
Jason Lamy Chappuis seizes an amazing gold after a great performance on the snows of Lago di Tesero. The Frenchman prevailed on Mario Stecher and Bjoern Kircheisen after a breathtaking final sprint.
After the ski-jumping part, it looked like something really difficult to achieve, particularly after the good performances on the hill of great skiers like Eric Frenzel and Magnus Moan.
Nevertheless, Jason Lamy Chappuis (FRA) started without worrying about the others and with only one aim in mind: getting the gold. From the first meter to the 10,000th, the Frenchman kept pushing without ever looking back, increasing the speed lap after lap and reaching the finish line in first position to conquer a gold that made him enter even more in the history of nordic combined. Lamy Chappuis delivered and did so in a powerful and visible way. «After the ski-jumping session I wasn’t really satisfied, but I had great materials for the cross-country race and I was able to win. I felt really strong on the last lap and there I realized I could fight for the gold» told the Frenchman right after the race.
Lamy Chappuis prevailed in a breathtaking sprint on a «super» Mario Stecher (AUT), author of a gigantic jump on the HS106 of Predazzo (106 meters) and an amazing performance on the ski-tracks of Lago di Tesero. To win his silver medal, Stecher had to struggle until the last inch, placing a wide 2-feet «telemark» under the finish line to put both feet ahead of those of the two German athletes.
The battle for the silver and the bronze was so tight that the jury had to wait for several minutes before deciding who had to step on the podium of this first Nordic Combined race in the Nordic World Ski Championships Trentino Fiemme 2013. In the end, their decision was to put Bjoern Kircheisen (GER) on the lowest step of the podium, leaving Eric Frenzel (GER) with a sour taste in his mouth, considering the fact that the bronze medal slipped from his fingers for only few centimeters.
During the morning, in the ski-jumping session, the best jumper in the group proved to be Haavard Klemetsen (NOR), who landed at the distance of 103.5 meters with good technique, a performance that granted him a solid first position, even if «super» Mario Stecher (AUT) showed an amazing jump of 106 meters in better wind conditions than Klemetsen and closed therefore right behind the Norwegian, starting the cross-country event 16’’ behind the leader. Behind them, among the non-specialists of the hill, Eric Frenzel (GER) and Magnus Moan (NOR) were the best, with jumps that allowed them to start the cross-country race only 41'' and 1’04’’ behind Klemetsen. Jason Lamy Chappuis instead didn’t have a great day on the hill and closed «only» 11th, starting the cross-country race 1’13’’ behind the winner.
In the end, this didn’t change much: after the first lap of the cross-country race, Stecher and Cristoph Bieler (AUT) succeeded in closing the gap on Klemetsen, who looked really relaxed on the skis, taking it slow and trying just to avoid wasting to much energies. Behind them Frenzel, Marjan Jelenko (SLO) and Taihei Kato (JPN) formed the chasing group, which followed the leaders at 19’’ distance, while Moan stayed at a distance of 32’’. These athletes were chased by a relentless Jason Lamy Chappuis, who kept increasing the pace until reaching the tails of the leaders, taking with him also Bjoern Kircheisen (GER), while Akito Watabe (JPN) couldn’t keep up with the pace set by the Frenchman and had to give up on his quest for the medals.
Amazingly, Magnus Moan didn’t make the difference on the skis and instead looked really tired already after a couple of laps, throwing in the towel and starting keeping a steady pace, away from the «noble» positions of the group. Then, on the last lap, Lamy Chappuis looked around for a couple of kilometers and then started increasing the pace, cutting off Kato, Jelenko, Bieler and Klemetsen from the fight for the medals. Despite the powerful action of Frenzel on the last climb of the course, the final ranking had to be decided on a breathtaking sprint, on which Lamy Chappuis exploited at best his ability as fast skier to rule Stecher and Kircheisen right under the finish line, leaving the World Cup leader Eric Frenzel off the podium for less than one centimeter.