OPA: Vermeulen and Muhlethaler with wins in Planica
Just one week after hosting the Nordic Combined Continental Cup, Planica stepped in to also take over the two Alpencup competitions scheduled for Kranj on the same weekend.
The first competition day saw Austrian Mika Vermeulen take his career-first Alpencup victory 9.2 seconds ahead of teammate David Aigner and Frenchman Laurent Muhlethaler (+12.2). On Sunday, Muhlethaler turned the tables and took the win 2.2 second ahead of Germany’s Simon Hüttel and Mika Vermeulen who finished a great weekend 20 seconds later than Muhlethaler on rank 3.
Strong jumper Simon Hüttel headed the result lists on Saturday with with 100.5 metres which gave him 123.5 points and 8 seconds of head start on Austria’s Christian Deuschl who also had 100.5 metres to show for. Leon Sarc from Slovenia ranked third at the intermediate points and had a delay of 18 seconds on Hüttel. In the race, however, Mika Vermeulen pulled a true tour de force, advancing from the 40th rank after jumping with a very strong cross-country performance which put him on top of the podium in the end. He needed 26:11.0 for the 10 kilometres, by far the fastest time of the day by over one minute and made up a disadvantage of two minutes and 18 seconds on the jumping leaders.
Ski Jumping Results
On day two, Hüttel and Deuschl were the strongest jumpers again with 100.5 and 97.5 metres but France’s Laurent Muhlethaler was hot on their heels with 96.5 metres and only 30 seconds to make up In the end, Hüttel managed to hang on to Muhlethaler and save a second rank before Mika Vermeulen stormed to the head of the field, coming from a tenth position with a disadvantage of one minute and 20 seconds. Despite Vermeulen setting the fastest cross-country time of 13:26.0 agin, Muhlethaler proved to strong to catch up with in a 5 kilometre-race and so the Austrian had to be satisfied with the third position this time.
Ski Jumping Results
For the overall, this means an extended lead for Laurent Muhlethaler (659 points). Phillip Mauersberger ranks second (399 p.) and this past weekend’s COC winner from Ramsau, Vinzenz Geiger, still holds the third position in the Alpencup (360 p.).