LILLEHAMMER, Norway (Dec. 4) – The USA was off the pace again Saturday as Mikko Kokslien of Norway picked up his first World Cup win knocking off defending FIS Nordic Combined World Cup champion Jason Lamy-Chappuis of France on the Olympic venue of Lillehammer. Olympic silver medalist Brett Camerota (Park City, UT) was 22nd in the jump, but dropped back to finish 40th as the top American.
Kokslien was 16th after the jump, starting 1:04 after French leader Francois Braud. Camerota, who was on the Olympic silver medal winning team, was 22nd after the jump but dropped back in the 10k cross country.
Athletes faced extremely challenging weather conditions with sub-zero temperatures at the Olympic jump and the Sjusjoen cross country trails 20k away.
In the cross country race, Braud, Lamy-Chappuis and Austrian Bernhard Gruber took the early lead until German Eric Frenzel and Kokslien caught up. Kokslien, who just missed a win a week ago in Finland, attached in the final kilometer and skied alone for an eight second victory. Austrian Felix Gottwald led the cross country, skiing up from 32nd to third.
Camerota ended up 2:24.2 back from Kokslien to finish 40th.
Lamy Chappuis continues to lead the World Cup with Kokslien moving into second ahead of Gottwald. A second event will be held Sunday in Lillehammer.
FIS NORDIC COMBINED WORLD CUP
(jumping/cross country, time back)
1. Mikko Kokslien, Norway, (16/6) 24:16.6
2. Jason Lamy-Chappuis, France, (3/28) +8.4 seconds
3. Felix Gottwald, Austria, (32/1) +13.3
4. Tino Edelmann, Germany, (27/2) +18.2
5. Eric Wenzel, Germany, (4/33) +22.5
40. Brett Camerota, Park City, UT, (22/54) +2:24.2
41. Taylor Fletcher, Steamboat Springs, CO, (44/34) +2:33.1
44. Bryan Fletcher, Steamboat Springs, CO, (35/41) +2:41.6
45. Billy Demong, Vermontville, NY, (53/17) +2:43.4