German mixed team takes Gold in Falun
The German mixed team took the title at the World Championships in Falun. Katharina Althaus, World Champion Carina Vogt, Richard Freitag and Severin Freund came in ahead of Norway and the defending champions of Japan. The teams of Austria and Slovenia came in fourth and fifth.
For Germany, especially Katharina Althaus, who was considered the weakest link, showed that she deserved her spot on the team with jumps on 91 m and 92.5 m. Richard Freitag showed an even better performance than in Saturday's individual competition with 93.5 m and 92 m. World and Olympic Champion Carina Vogt jumped on 93.5 m and 92 m.
Freund ahead of Velta this time
Severin Freund could win the final duel against Rune Velta this time, after he he came in 0.4 points behind the Norwegian on Saturday. Freund posted jumps on 97 m and 96 m. The team scored a total of 917.9 points and had a lead of 2.3 points over Norway. Carina Vogt said afterwards: "I'm so happy right now, I can't believe it. I thought that we would have a good chance to win, but Norway was so close all the time. But we made it."
The Norwegians won Silver thanks to the surprisingly strong performances of the ladies. Line Jahr (93.5 m; 90.5 m) and Maren Lundby (95 m; 91.5 m) exceeded the expectations today. Anders Bardal, with jumps on 92.5 m and 89.5 m; and World Champion Rune Velta, with 95 m and 95.5 m, could keep up with the favorites of Germany. Maren Lundby said: "I'm so proud of our performance today. Especially us girls had a tough day here on Friday here in Falun. It is our first medal in a mixed competition at World Championships so it means a lot to me and to the Norwegian team."
Kasai again not very good
The Japanese team, gold medalist of 2013, showed a solid performance. While Sara Takanashi made amends for missing a medal in the individual competition with strong jumps on 96.5 m and 93 m, Noriaki Kasai could not live up to the expectations. Yuki Ito and Taku Takeuchi secured the medal with a total of 888.3 points. "I'm not so happy with my own jumps, but as a team we managed to take the bronze medal. We wanted to defend our title from the World Championships in Val di Fiemme 2013", said Takanashi.
Hayboeck the weakest link
The Austrians probably had lost their chance to win a medal already after the second jump. Michael Hayboeck landed already after 83 m and wasn't able to significantly improve in the final. Because Stefan Kraft was only among the best in the final round with 95 m, the good performances of Daniela Iraschko-Stolz and Jacqueline Seifriedsberger were not enough for Team Austria. They came in fourth with 869.5 points.
The World Championships continued to be disappointing for the Slovenes. Only Peter Prevc was able to show his best performance with jumps on 95.5 m and 94.5 m. Nejc Dezman, Spela Rogelj and Maja Vtic could do that well on the normal hill in Falun. Slovenia finished fifth with 868.4 points.
Russians with good performance
The Russians athletes can be satisfied with their sixth place with 791.8 points. Irina Avvakumova showed what she is capable of in the final round with 91.5 m, Sofya Tikhonova, Mikahil Maksimochkin and Ilmir Hazetdinov had some solid jumps.
The seventh place went to Team USA. As expected, Nick Alexaner and especially William Rhoads were not able to keep up with the performances of their female teammates. Nick Alexander fell in the final round and it seemed he might have suffered a serious knee injury. Nita Englund and Sarah Hendrickson, with jumps on 98.5 m and 94 m, earned the sport in the final round for their team and they came in seventh with 789.3 points. France was eighth with 773.2 points.
The teams of Italy, Finland and the Czech Republic could not qualify for the final round.
Successful WSC for Vogt
The World Championships are now over for the ladies. The outstanding athlete was without a doubt Carina Vogt with two Gold medals. The men will have their individual competition on the large hill on Thursday, followed by the team competition on Saturday.