Nordic Combined Awards conclude 2016/17 season

20 March 2017 08:03
Eero Hirvonen wins the "Rookie of the Season Award"
Eero Hirvonen wins the "Rookie of the Season Award" -
Romina Eggert

A phenomenal night, beginning with the Nordic Combined Awards and concluding with the Final Party, ended the winter season 2016/17 for the Nordic Combined athletes, team staff and officials.

The evening started out with the presentation of all teams and the red carpet appearance of the Top Ten World Cup athletes in Schonach’s packed “Haus des Gastes”. Five-time overall World Cup winner Eric Frenzel presented his new crystal globe to the excited public and also his teammates got to celebrate their dominant Nations Cup win with their home crowd. A group picture with all present athletes concluded the first part of the evening.

Host and former Nordic Combined athlete Hans-Peter Pohl took over from Jens Zimmermann, who had lead through the introduction of the crystal globes, and the Nordic Combined Awards began. Together with his Eurosport colleague and Nordic Combined Awards Jury Spokesperson Roman Knoblauch, Pohl introduced the different categories and nominees.

Philip Gottweis of AUDI had the honour of announcing the winners: Finland’s Eero Hirvonen was voted “Rookie of the Year” by the ten members of the NC Awards Jury and received two VIP tickets to the Audi Cup taking place in Munich in the summer, as well as a slackline set by Viessmann. With the friendly support of the Ironman organisation, legend Hannu Manninen was awarded one free start for an Ironman event of his choice in the summer for the “Comeback of the Year”. 

German team dcoctor, Dr. Stefan Pecher and his medical team were recognised with a Fair Play Prize for their help across all nationalities, whenever medical support was needed and other teams did not have their own medical staff on location.

Eric Frenzel was jokingly presented with a chocolate shoe in size 56 due to his several lost finish line sprints against Johannes Rydzek and while Rydzek had to concede defeat to Frenzel in the 2016/17 overall, he still was the most decorated athlete of the evening. The jury voted his gold medal sweep in Lahti to be the “Moment of the Year” (prize 2 VIP tickets to the Audi Cup by Audi) and his general performance made him the “Athlete of the Year”, which earned him a wireless in-ear speaker set by Viessmann.  

The night concluded with the traditional wood sawing contests and the Final Party and athletes, coaches, service staff, media representatives and the general public celebrated together, supported by DJ Marco Mzee’s music program.