Piotr Zyla wins qualification
at the World Cup opening
Piotr Zyla - FIS
On the opening day of the ski jumping season 2013/14,
the teams of Poland and Germany picked up where
they left off in the FIS Grand Prix 2013. After
dominating the events this summer, they showed their
strength also against the world's best jumpers and
took six of the top 11 spots in the qualification.
Piotr Zyla was first, Dawid Kubacki was third and
Jan Ziobro's fifth proved the awesome shape of the
Polish team. In addition, the pre-qualified Kamil
Stoch posted an outstanding jump on 145 m and underlined
the team's ambition to stand on top of the podium
in Saturday's team event. "I was not surprised
by our performances. We've been working hard for
this. My jump was fantastic and I enjoyed it. We
are in a good shape and have a chance to win",
said Kamil Stoch.
After today's qualification it seems that the German
team of head coach Werner Schuster is most likely
to keep up with the Poles. Their young athletes
attracted attention: Marinus Kraus as sixth, Karl
Geiger as eighth, Andreas Wank as eleventh and Grand
Prix winner Andreas Wellinger provided a strong
performance. Maximilian Mechler also qualified as
39th. Michael Neumayer and Severin Freund were pre-qualified
and will also compete in Sunday's individual event.
"We will have a young team in the competition
and it's mainly about having fun and enjoying ski
jumping. Our goal is to finish on the podium",
told Werner Schuster.
Anders Fannemel of Norway was second, Andreas Kofler
of Austria was fourth, Jurij Tepes of Slovenia was
seventh and veteran Janne Ahonen was ninth and left
a strong impression. The teams of Slovenia and Austria
are also contenders for top results in the team
competition. The Austrian can rely on overall World
Cup winner Gregor Schlierenzauer in this event.
Once again he showed a great jump with 139.5 m.
The season opening was a disappointment for Jernej
Damjan. The Slovene, who was second in this year's
FIS Grand Prix, failed to make the cut as 47th.
This fate was also shared by Lukas Hlava, Rune Velta
and Olli Muotka.
The first qualification at a World Cup opening in
Central Europe since Planica (SLO) in 1994 took
place with light fog, drizzling rain and temperatures
of about +2∞C. The hill in Klingenthal, that was
perfectly prepared with snow of last winter, provided
wintery conditions for the athletes.