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NEWS

Norway wins FIS team tour



Nobody would have expected that before today's team competition. The team of Norway showed an extremely strong performance and could defeat the favorites of Slovenia in the final of the FIS Team Tour. Besides winning ahead of Austria and Slovenia today, the athletes of coach Alex Stцckl could also win the prize money of € 100 000, - for the overall title of the FIS Team Tour.

Slovenia started the day of the ski flying team event with a lead of more than 40 points, but they already lost that after two of eight jumps. At the end Anders Bardal, Tom Hilde, Andreas Stjernen and Anders Jacobsen won the Team Tour with a lead of 11.2 points.

The Norwegian athletes were unbeatable on Sunday. The team of Alexander Stoeckl reached 1577.1 points and could overtake Slovenia in the FIS Team Tour at the finish line. Anders Jacobsen, who is celebrating his 28th birthday, made himself a great gift with impressive jumps on 206 m and 212 m and was the best of an individual ranking with his score of 407.6 points. Long jumps were shown also by Tom Hilde (203.5 m and 204 m), Anders Bardal (209.5 m and 198.5 m) and Andreas Stjernen (211 m and 197.5 m).

"We are happy today, not only because of the overall win of the Team Tour. We showed very good jumps today and somehow it was easy. We don't know yet, how we will split the А 100 000,-, we will think about that later. In Val di Fiemme I want to fight for the medals, especially because I haven't won an individual medal at World Championships yet", said Bardal.

The Austrian team could not start the FIS Team Tour at the podium in Willingen, but came in second in Oberstdorf. All four Austrian athletes (Stefan Kraft, Wolfgang Loitzl, Martin Koch, Gregor Schlierenzauer) made consistent jumps and scored 1529.3 points. Today World Cup leader Gregor Schlierenzauer (192 and 202.5 m) was not their best, youngster Stefan Kraft (205.5 and 208 m) earned the most points with his total of 403.4 points. Austria achieved another podium finish with the third place in the FIS Team Tour.

"We did our best today, but we also didn't have a lot of luck. Actually we already lost the FIS Team Tour in Willingen. In a team competition it's always exciting when your teammates are jumping. You wish them the best and today it paid off. My goal for Val di Fiemme is to be on the team for the large hill competition", told Kraft.

With the third place in this team event, Slovenia could not defend the lead in FIS Team Tour. Despite the strong performance of Robert Kranjec, who posted jumps on 211 m and 212.5 m, team made with him, Jurij Tepes, Jaka Hvala and Peter Prevc earned only 1523.6 points. "I'm not angry that we didn't win. That's ski jumping, sometimes your are on top, sometimes you are not. We are still satisfied with the Team Tour. Today we made a few mistakes and they were too big to win. The Norwegians were extremely strong today and I congratulate them on their awesome performance. We have to show our best jumps in order to be among the best in Val di Fiemme", said Peter Prevc.

In front of their home crowd the local heroes of Germany could not celebrate a podium result both in the team event and FIS Team Tour overall. Veteran Michael Neumayer (201 m and 209.5 m) and Severin Freund (205 m and 205.5 m) earned good points for the German team. The Germans would have succeeded in making the podium finish, but Richard Freitag had big problems in his second jump and landed and 196 m.

Japan took part in the SundayТs event without Daiki Ito, who was one of the best athletes of the individual competition. Despite the absence of the 27-year old, the young team of Junshiro Kobayashi, Reruhi Shimizu, Yuta Watase and Taku Takeuchi came in fifth with their total of 1387.3 points.

The sixth place went to the young team of Poland. Krzysztof Biegun, Jan Ziobro, Aleksander Zniszczol and Klemens Muranka earned 1279.6 points. Vojtech Stursa, Borek Sedlak, Cestmir Kozisek and Anton Hajek collected 1198.8 points and finished seventh. Yet again Anton Hajek was the best Czech with his jumps on 195 m and 211 m. The Finnish team with Sami Heiskanen, Ossi-Pekka Valta, Lauri Asikainen and Olli Muotka came in eighth with a total of 1138.1 points.

After a break of two days, the athletes will be back at the hill on Wednesday for the first official training rounds of the World Championships.

Berkutschi.com, 17.02.2013

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