Ito, Sakuyama and Takanashi win in Sapporo
The Japanese national championships on the normal and large hill were held last weekend in Sapporo.
On the Miyanomori hill (HS 100) the title went to Kenshiro Ito, who posted jumps on 93.5 m and 85 m that earned him a total of 222.5 points. Taku Takeuchi finished second with 95 m and 82.5 m and 219.0 points, one point behind, FIS Grand Prix overall winner Kento Sakuyama came in third with 90.5 m and 86 m.
Yukiya Sato and Ryoyu Kobayashi, who showed the best jump in the second round with 88 m and moved up from tenth, shared the fourth place. Noriaki Kasai was in the lead after the first round with 94.5 m, but with only 79 m in the final the veteran lost a few places and finished seventh overall.
A day later the large hill event took place on the Okurayama hill (HS 134). This competition was won by Kento Sakuyama with 127.5 m and 126 m and a total of 254.8 points. Noriaki Kasai was second with 128.5 m and 122.5 m and 251.8 points. Ryoyu Kobayashi, leader after the first round with 131.5 m, could not defend this top position with his second jump on 121 m and came in third.
The places four to six went to Taku Takeuchi, Kenshiro Ito and Shohei Tochimoto. Daiki Ito, who tied for third with Sakuyama after the first round, finished seventh.
Top favorite Sara Takanashi took a clear win in the ladies' competition on the normal hill with jumps on 92 m and 90 m and 231.5 points. The second and third place went to Kaori Iwabuchi (74 m / 83.5 m; 171.0 points) and Yuki Ito (78.5 m / 76 m; 169.0 points).
Photo: Ski Association of Japan / Takafumi Iwase