Outstanding Sjoeen wins again in Hakuba
Phillip Sjoeen also won the second FIS Grand Prix competition in Hakuba (JPN). Daniel-Andre Tande completed the Norwegian double victory in second. Slovenia's Jernej Damjan came in third.
“A dream came true for me here. It means a lot to me that I was jumping on this level over the past weeks and having my teammate Daniel here makes it complete. It's a great feeling to wear the yellow bib now. The winter is still far away, but I want to compete in the 4-Hills-Tournament and the World Championships.”
Only 16 hours after his first win in the Grand Prix, 18-year-old Sjoeen was unbeatable. Jumps on 129 m and 134 m (263.5 points) earned him a clear lead over his teammate Tande, who followed in second with 129 m and 135 m and 249.2 points. Sjoeen started from a lower gate in both rounds by a coaches' decision. “Of course I'm satisfied”, Tande said. “The second jump was awesome. I had to feeling that it would go too far, so I just tried to get down and land.”
Damjan, second on the day before, came in only 0.3 points behind Tande this time. The Slovene achieved his second podium result this weekend with 128 m and 131.5 m. Jernej Damjan told: “I'm really happy. Yesterday I was joking that I want to be third. It happened and now I have the whole set of medals from Hakuba. The Norwegians were very strong. My jumps were not perfect, and these two were great.”
Japanese miss the podium again
Taku Takeuchi repeated his second place from Saturday's competition, only 1.1 points behind Damjan. But still he showed a very good performance with jumps on 127.5 m and 131 m. Matjaz Pungertar improved Saturday's result and finished fifth. But with two jumps on 125.5 m he was not that close to the best. Junshiro Kobayashi (237.8 points) in sixth, Shohei Tochimoto (230.3 points) in ninth and Reruhi Shimizu (227.6 points) In tenth achieved a strong team result for Japan. Veteran Noriaki Kasai was only 26th this time. With 233.8 points Michael Neumayer was the best German in seventh, his teammates Daniel Wenig, Karl Geiger and Markus Eisenbichler came in on the places 15 to 17.
Gregor Deschwanden significantly improved his 21st place from Saturday's competition and was eighth with 230.9 points. Jakub Wolny was once again the best of the Polish athletes, this time in eleventh, close ahead of Finland's Sami Niemi.
Positive for the Russian team: With Vladislav Boyarintsev, Denis Kornilov and Mikhail Maksimochkin in 21st, 22nd and 24th, three athletes qualified for the final round. The same applies for the Czech team, for which Lukas Hlava, Cestmir Kozisek and Martin Cikl came in 28th, 29th and 30th.
Sjoeen wears "Yellow"
After his outstanding weekend in Hakuba, Phillip Sjoeen now leads in the overall ranking of the Grand Prix. With a total of 293 points he now has a lead of 95 points ahead of Daniel-Andre Tande and Jernej Damjan.
The FIS Grand Prix continues on September 20th in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Then the series will conclude with the events in Hinzenbach (AUT) and Klingenthal (GER).