Manninen wins FIS Nordic Combined

Posted By: Steve Bellamy on March 6, 2010 1:15 pm

Hannu Manninen of Finland has ended the season on the highest step of the podium. Today, he won the DKB FIS Nordic Combined World Cup race in front of Felix Gottwald (AUT) and Olympic Champion Jason Lamy Chappuis (FRA) in Lahti.
The Ski Jumping competition was cancelled because of strong and changing winds. Therefore, the Provisional Competition Round (PCR) from Thursday was used. Bernhard Gruber (AUT) was in the lead, seven seconds ahead of team-mate Wilhelm Denifl. Hannu Manninen (FIN) was in seventh place, 45 seconds behind; Magnus Moan (NOR) and Felix Gottwald (AUT) had some 1:30 minutes disadvantage.
At the end of the first lap during the Cross-Country race, Manninen went into the lead. In the second lap, he broke away from Jason Lamy Chappuis. And then, it was just a race to victory. Gottwald raced from 29th place at half-time to second place overall.
On the finish line, Manninen was 28.4 seconds ahead of Gottwald, and 35.9 ahead of Chappuis.
Fastest on the track was, as on Saturday, Felix Gottwald (AUT) with 24:05.0 minutes.
Today’s top three:

1. Hannu Manninen (FIN)               108.4 points (12.)/24:23.6 (3.)     25:08.6
2. Felix Gottwald (AUT)                    96.7 points (29.)/24:05.0 (1.)    +28.4
3. Jason Lamy Chappuis (FRA)   113.6 points (7.)/25:20.5 (19.)     +35.9
Overall standing:
1. Jason Lamy Chappuis (FRA) 1055, 2. Felix Gottwald (AUT) 799, 3. Eric Frenzel (GER) 688, 4. Magnus Moan (NOR) 687, 5. Tino Edelmann (GER) 609, 6. Mario Stecher (AUT) 585.
“This was my last race in this season,” said Hannu Manninen “and I have to say that it was really amazing for me. I achieved unbelievable results in the last months, three victories, two second places – I enjoyed every moment.  Today, my game plan was to start strong and to listen to my body. I made up 45 seconds in the first turn, thi9s is quite a lot, and it was not easy to ski the last kilometers alone. The gap between me and Felix, however, was big enough; I didn’t worry too much about the possibility that he could catch me.”