After the exciting normal hill competition on Sunday, the jumpers enjoyed two days off before the first official training on the large hill was held on Wednesday evening.
Tbe HS 140 in the RusSki Gorki Ski Jumping Center is a new facility for most of the athletes, because both World Cup competitions here in Sochi last winter took place on the normal hill.
The first training day didn't go without problems. Due to the strong wind the first round started with a delay of about 30 minutes and so there were only two, instead of the originally planned three training rounds.
The best jump in the first round under still changing wind conditions was shown by Severin Freund with 132.5 m. The German was already one of the top favorites on the normal hill after great performances in training, but he then lost his chances to win a medal with a fall in the first round. Michael Hayboeck of Austria and Germany's Andreas Wellinger followed in second and third with 127.5 m and 127 m.
While local hero Denis Kornilov showed a very performances iwth 131 m, his teammate Mikhail Maksimochkin had bad luck. he fell after the landing of his jump on 117.5 m and had to be carried out of the outrun on a stretcher. He was taken to the hospital, were no serious injuries were diagnosed. But Maksimochkin will stay in the hospital until Thursday morning.
Peter Prevc, silver medalist on the normal hill, proved his great shape with 131.5 m in the second round. The Slovene already had a strong jump in the first round with 125 m. Germany's Marinus Kraus came in second with 125 m. Gregor Deschwanden of Switzerland showed the longest jump with 132 m, but he had better conditions and so he was only third.
The Olympic Champion on the normal hill, Kamil Stoch, was also among the best this time with 127.5 m and 123.5 m. The Pole fell at the landing in the second round, but he was able to walk and probably didn't suffer any serious injuries.
Anders Bardal, who took the bronze medal in the first competition here in Sochi, jumped on 122.5 m and 114 m in this training session.
Reruhi Shimizu showed a very good performance in both rounds with 127 m and 125 m, also Daiki Ito (124 m in the first round) and Yuta Watase (125 m in the second round) were strong today. The Japanese team, for which Noriaki Kasai didn't take part today, proved that they are one of the contenders for the medals in the team competition.
The next training will be held on Thursday at 6:30 pm CET, then also Robert Kranjec, who suffered a knee injury when he fell in the normal hill competition, wants to jump again. The qualification for Saturday's competition will then take place on Friday.