Eighteen-year-old Andreas Wellinger (GER) finished
second in Klingenthal on Sunday for his third career
individual World Cup podium.
If he reaches another podium in Kuusamo, Wellinger
will set a new record by a jumper from any German
state of four individual World Cup podiums through
the age of 18. He currently shares the record of
three with the great Jens Wei?flog (GDR).
Since 2000, Wellinger's three individual World Cup
podiums through age 18 are the equal third most
in the sport with Ville Larinto (FIN). Only Gregor
Schlierenzauer (AUT, 28) and Thomas Morgenstern
(AUT, 11) made more podiums through age 18 during
If Wellinger wins one of the events this weekend
(at age 18-093 on Friday and 18-094 on Saturday),
he would be the youngest individual World Cup winner
since Schlierenzauer at 18-069 in March 2008 in
He would also be the second youngest German winner
of an individual ski jumping World Cup event and
youngest since Stephan Hocke (GER) won in Engelberg
at 18-056 in December 2001 (includes both East and
Wellinger came fifth in the Kuusamo event last season,
which was the equal best performance in his World
Cup career at the time.
Young men are ruling the hill
Krzysztof Biegun (POL) was an unlikely winner of
the season opening competition in Klingenthal at
the age of 19 years, 187 days.
If Biegun wins the first competition in Kuusamo,
he would be only the second teenager in the last
15 years (since Slovenia's Primoz( Peterka in 1998)
to win back-to-back World Cup competitions. Gregor
Schlierenzauer (AUT) had six different streaks of
two or more consecutive victories when he was a
The last 12 individual World Cup competitions have
all been won by jumpers aged 26 or younger, with
eight of those being won by jumpers aged 23 or younger.
The last man to win an individual World Cup event
over the age of 26 was Robert Kranjec (SLO), who
won a ski flying competition in Vikersund in January
at age 31.
Kranjec is also the only man over 27 to have made
the podium in the last six individual World Cup
events, coming third in Oslo last March.
Biegun is the sixth different Pole to win an individual
World Cup event. Three of those winners - Biegun,
Piotr Zyla and Kamil Stoch Ц have won events in
the past nine months alone. Before Stoch's first
World Cup win in 2011, only three Poles Ц Stanislaw
Bobak, Pjotr Fijas and Adam Malysz Ц had won events
in the first 32 years of World Cup ski jumping.
Ahonen's comeback returns to home snow
Two-time World Cup overall winner Janne Ahonen (FIN)
began his latest comeback by finishing 16th in the
individual competition in Klingenthal, the best
result among Finnish jumpers.
It was Ahonen's best result in an individual World
Cup event since he came fifth in Garmisch-Partenkirchen
on New Year's Day 2011.
This weekend's competitions will be Ahonen's first
World Cup appearances on home snow in Finland since
March 2011 (Lahti).
Ahonen shares the record of two individual World
Cup wins in Kuusamo with Andreas Kofler (AUT) and
Peterka. Ahonen and Kofler, who will compete in
Kuusamo despite suffering minor injuries after a
fall in Klingenthal on Sunday, are vying to become
the first man to win three individual World Cup
events in Kuusamo.
Both of Ahonen's World Cup wins in Kuusamo came
in November 2004, and he remains the only jumper
to win twice in Kuusamo in the same season.
Ahonen has five career individual World Cup wins
on home snow in Finland, three short of Matti Nyka"nen's
(FIN) record for the most wins in Finland. If Ahonen
can turn back the clock and win one of the events
in Kuusamo, he would join Martin Schmitt (GER) in
second place on that list behind Nyka"nen with
six wins on Finnish snow.
Ahonen has six or more individual World Cup wins
in three different countries (Germany, the Czech
Republic and Austria), sharing the record with Schlierenzauer.
If he can win a sixth event in Finland, Ahonen would
become the first man to have six or more individual
World Cup wins in four different countries.
Ahonen's last World Cup win, in March 2008, came
in Finland (Kuopio).
Sunday will mark the three-year anniversary of Finland's
last win in an individual World Cup event Ц Larinto's
triumph in Kuopio on 1 December 2010.