Austria's Stefan Kraft won the FIS World Cup competition in Zakopane on Sunday evening. With jumps of 133 m and 132.5 m (278.3 points), Kraft came in ahead of Norway's Robert Johansson and Yukiya Sato of Japan. It was the 13th World Cup win for Kraft, the first in almost two years when Kraft won in Planica 2017.
"I like this hill here a lot, the atmosphere is always special. The first jump was very good, of course I was a bit nervous before the second jump. I wanted to take some risk and I'm happy that it was good enough for the first place. My big goal is to win a medal at the World Championships in Seefeld in front of the home crowd, but now I'm focusing on weekend after weekend and I want to remain in this good shape", explained today's winner.
After the disaster yesterday, when the Norwegian team was only eighth in the team event due to a disqualification, the weekend in Zakopane ended on a high note for Norway. Besides Johansson in second, also Johann Andre Forfang and Halvor Egner Granerud achieved top results in fourth and fifth. Forfang was only 19th after the first round but could move up 15 places to fourth with the longest jump of the day of 137 m in the final.
Second-placed Robert Johansson told: "So far this winter I have been struggling to show the same jumps in the competition as in training. I'm happy that I could finally do two quite solid jumps and fight for the top. It was a good day for me."
For 23-year-old Japanese Yukiya Sato, this third place was a career-best. Besides overall World Cup leader Ryoyu Kobayashi, who was seventh in this competition, Sato is now the second Japanese who could achieve a podium result this winter.
Germany and Poland far behind
Best German was Stephan Leyhe in seventh, Constantin Schmid came in on a strong 15th place. Karl Geiger (24th), Richard Freitag (25th) and Markus Eisenbichler in 26th finished far behind the best today. This result was a disappointment for the Germans after their win in yesterday's team competition.
Almost the entire Polish team around three-time Olympic champion Kamil Stoch and top favorite Dawid Kubacki could also not live up to the expectations. Best Pole was Dawid Kubacki in 12th, Stefan Hula was 17th, Piotr Zyla 19th and Kamil Stoch even failed to make the cut for the final round in 36th.
Ryoyu Kobayashi still leads the overall World Cup with now 1128 points ahead of the two Poles Kamil Stoch (624 points) and Piotr Zyla (603 points). Stefan Kraft is now fourth (581 points).
The next competitions of the FIS Ski Jumping World Cup will be held in Sapporo (JPN) next weekend.