Vuokatti hosts thrilling first Youth Cup events of the season
The first FIS Youth Cup of the 2016/17 season is history and the participants, coaches and parents can look back on a thrilling few days in Finland. 15 boys and 12 girls started in the Youth Cup age categories joined by nine youngsters in an open category with the years of birth 2004 - 2005. Athletes came from the home team of Finland, Estonia and Germany but also from overseas (USA and Canada) and also from Latvia, a new and different sight on a Nordic Combined start list.
Next to two competitions, one with a roller-ski race and one a cross-country race in Vuokatti’s ski tunnel, the athletes spent a lot of time training on the HS 54 hill, as well as with a body height measurement, a bib draw ceremony and meet & greet with the Finnish national Nordic Combined team and a big final pancake party and sauna evening after the last event.
Jenny Nowak from Germany was the beaming winner in the Girls I category on both days, ruling supreme already on the jumping hill (53 and 55.8 metres) and was able to decide both races from the front. The second placed girl on both days was Estonia’s Triinu Hausenberg who had to concede defeat with +53.0 seconds on the first day but closed the gap to +15.0 seconds on the second day. The third rank went to Finland’s Pinja Koivisto on the first day (+2:02.0) and to Russian Elizaveta Udintcova (+1:17.0) on the second day.
As only one girl from the Youth II category was on start, Estonia’s Annemarii Bendi was the undisputed winner who skied the 5 km in 15:45.0 (rollerskis) and 18:39.0 (cross-country skis).
In the Youth I boys’ category, the winners were called Waltteri Karhumaa and Perttu Reponen. While Jan Andersen captured the pole position for the roller-ski race with 60 metres and 36 seconds of a head start on Estonia’s Markkus Alter, Karhumaa worked his way to the win from a fourth position, +51 seconds behind Andersen and prevailed by setting the fastest roller-ski time of 12:23.9 for the 5 km. In the end, it came down to a finish line sprint between the German and the Finn, which Karhumaa won by a hair’s breath (0.1 sec). Germany’s Andersen held on to the second position while Finn Perttu Reponen finished 20 seconds later to take the bronze position.
On the second day, the same three athletes ended up on the podium, just in a different order. Reponen won by a clear 29 seconds after setting himself up in a promising second position after the jumping part. Karhumaa had to be content with being the second best on that day and Jan Andersen improved from rank four to rank three, +0.36 after Reponen.
The winners of the open international boys’ and girls’ races were Tuomas Kinnunen (FIN), Konstantin Izvolskii (RUS) and Elli Seppänen (FIN) won twice in the girls' category.
You can find all result lists here.