COC: First win for Markus Eisenbichler
The winning streak of the Slovenian team in the Continental Cup is over. Germany's Markus Eisenbichler won the third competition in Sapporo this weekend, the first on the large hill, ahead of Junshiro Kobayashi and Simen Key Grimsrud.
Markus Eisenbichler was fourth after the first round with 124 m, with the longest jump of the day on 137.5 m in the final the German then took the clear win with 262.7 points. After three podium results so far, this was the first win in the Continental Cup for the 22-year-old. "It was a very good competition, the hill is nice as well. I'm already looking forward to tomorrow", said Eisenbichler.
The leader after the first round, local hero Junshiro Kobayashi, could not keep up with Eisenbichler in the final with his 123.5 m and finished second with 249.7 points. This was still a career best in the COC for him. "I was able to jump pretty well, thanks to the good wind conditions. I'm satisfied with my performance and I'll continue to do my best."
Only 0.8 points behind the Japanese, the third place went to Simen Key Grimsrud of Norway with 122 m and 128.5 m. "I'm very relieved that I was on the podium today, because I haven't been in a good shape for some time. I'm also glad that I got good judges' marks."
After their double victory on Friday, the Slovenes closely missed the podium this time. Their best was Robert Hrgota in fourth. Stefan Hayboeck of Austria could hope for his first win with a second place at half time, at the end his 121 m in the second round earned him the fifth place.
Gregor Deschwanden of Switzerland, second in the first competition in Sapporo, ws sixth, followed by Slovenia's Anze Semenic (7th).
The two Germans Danny Queck and Karl Geiger also came in among the best today. Queck moved up from 21st to eighth in the final, Geiger from 18th to ninth.
Nejc Dezman, who won the two normal hill competitions here in Sapporo, finished tenth this time, but still extended his lead in the overall ranking. The Slovene now leads with 401 points, ahead of the Austrians Manuel Poppinger (354 points) and Michael Hayboeck (350 points).