Akito Watabe won the second of two Individual Gundersen events in Oberstdorf. The Japanese crossed the finish line 20.6 seconds ahead of Eric Frenzel. Ilkka Herola stormed to the podium again, finishing 26 seconds after the winner.
Watabe had already won the jumping event earlier in the evening, In rainy tailwind conditions, the Japanese jumped 131 metres. 146.4 points meant a 42-second head start for the Watabe on “eternal rival” Eric Frenzel. He had jumped to 132 metres (136 p.). Poland’s Szczepan Kupczak showed 126 metres and 134.5 points meant start position three with a time behind of 48 seconds.
Yoshito Watabe landed his jump without problems today after a coach request put him two gates lower than the other jumpers. Unfortunately for Watabe, he did not reach the 95% of hill size with his 128 metre jump, so that he was not rewarded with gate compensation points. He started the race from position four with a handicap of 49 seconds. As in yesterday’s race, Ilkka Herola started with a delay of one minute. Friday winner Vinzenz Geiger had a bigger task ahead of him on Sunday with a delay of one minute and 24 seconds to make up.
So far, Akito Watabe had not been showing the best skiing results but the race turned into an unexpected start - finish victory for the Japanese. He even increased his lead by two seconds on the first lap and then steadily held all pursuers around the 30-second mark behind him.
Even though Herola, Frenzel, Yoshito Watabe and Szczepan Kupczak were able to ski together, the foursome did not manage to close the gap further. Kupczak and Yoshito Watabe had to let go of Herola and Frenzel towards the end of the race, while Vinzenz Geiger came charging to the front. Herola and Frenzel proved to be too strong for the local hero but he finished the race on a good fourth place. Yoshito Watabe was fifth, Fabian Rießle sixth, Mario Seidl seventh, Martin Fritz eighth, Lukas Greiderer ninth and local hero Johannes Rydzek tenth.
In the overall rankings, Mario Seidl now leads with 256 points, Ilkka Herola is second with 246 and Johannes Rydzek third with 211 points.