Japanese remain the specialists for mixed team events
Taku Takeuchi, Yuki Ito, Sara Takanashi, Daiki Ito - FIS
The team of Japan, with Yuki Ito, Daiki Ito, Sara Takanashi and Taku Takeuchi, won this winter's first mixed team competition. With a total of 942.1 points they took a clear win ahead of Austria and Norway.
The four jumpers of Japan, who also won the title at the last World Championships in Val di Fiemme, were on the second place after the first jumps. In the second round they were all able to further improve and captured the win. Also thanks to a great performance Taku Takeuchi, who would have one a men's individual event today.
Despite the consistent performance, Daiki Ito still sees room for improvement. "My jumps were not bad, but not that good either. But of course I'm very satisfied with today's win and now I'm looking forward to the competition tomorrow."
His teammate Sara Takanashi, last winter's highflyer, was satisfied with her performance at the start of the season. "The snowfall was pretty heavy in the first round and it was not easy for me because I skipped the training jump. But it the second round it went pretty well for me, so I'm satisfied and happy about the win."
After the first round it seemed that the Austrians would be the winners of this competition. At this point Jacqueline Seifriedsberger, Thomas Morgenstern, Daniela Iraschko-Stolz and Gregor Schlierenzauer were in the lead, 25 points ahead of the Japanese. Especially Seifriedsberger and Schlierenzauer were not able to repeat their strong performances and so they came in second with 901.9 points.
"My jumps were okay, but I think I'm only at about 80 % of my potential. I'm satisfied with the second place, it was an improvement compared to last year", Daniela Iraschko-Stolz said about her first competition after a serious knee injury.
The hosts of Norway wanted to be on the podium in this competition, and they achieved this goal. Maren Lundby, the best of the ladies on Friday, Rune Velta, Anette Sagen and Anders Bardal moved up from fourth to third win the second round (887.5 points).
It was a close race for this third place. With 883.6 points Germany (Katharina Althaus, Karl Geiger, Carina Vogt and Marinus Kraus) closely missed the podium, but Karl Geiger showed an outstanding jump with 107.5 points in the second round. He improved the hill record of Andreas Kofler by 2.5 meters. Slovenia, with Maja Vtic, Jaka Hvala, Ema Klinec and Peter Prevc, were not far behind the Top 3 as fifth with 876.6 points.
The teams of Italy (840.4 points), France (829.7 points) and Canada (766.9) also reached the second round. Russia, Switzerland, Finland, the Czech Republic, the USA and Poland failed to qualify for the final of the Top 8 teams.