Franz-Josef Rehrl and Mario Seidl have begun their competition summer 2018 in the best of ways: they won the Team Sprint event in Oberwiesenthal. With an amazing last lap, Mario Seidl secured the win ahead of Team Germany III (Terence Weber / Manuel Faißt), who finished 5.8 seconds later. Their Bavarian teammates Vinzenz Geiger and Johannes Rydzek claimed position three, +28.2 behind the winners.
The Japanese brother duo Akito and Yoshito Watabe delighted with two jumps of 98 and 99 metres and took the intermediate lead after the jumping part of the event with a total of 233.7 points. Franz-Josef Rehrl and Mario Seidl followed closely with a time disadvantage of only three seconds after showing 97 and 99.5 metres (232 points).
Terence Weber of Team Germany III showed the longest jump of the day with 101 metres and together with Manuel Faißt’s 97 metres, the German duo started ten second behind the Japanese leaders. Teammates Eric Frenzel and Fabian Rießle followed 28 seconds later and carried the spectator’s hopes for a local hero victory. With Japan II starting at the same time as Austria II (+0:41) and France I starting at +0:43 and Germany II and Finland I at +0:55, the field was tightly packed at the start and promised a lot of action on the track.
The race was the expected tight and action packed affair with a trio of teams leading the race for the first part until Akito Watabe suffered a broken pole and a gap opened up to Franz-Josef Rehrl and Terence Weber that also his brother Yoshito could not close on his laps anymore. While teams Austria I and Germany III stayed together until a fabulous last lap by Mario Seidl made the day for the Austrians.
Behind the two teams a large group batted for the places and ultimately, the brothers Watabe were swallowed by this large group. Johannes Rydzek finished best and put the Obertdorf Skiclub team together on rank three. Ilkka Herola and 2017 Junior World Champion Arttu Mäkiaho ended up on the fourth position (+33.0), Eric Frenzel and Fabian Rießle finished 2.7 seconds later on rank five and last year’s winners, Tomas Portyk and Miroslav Dvorak ended their first event of the summer on rank six (+36.5)