19-year old Johannes Rydzek won his first World Cup race in Lahti today. At the last event of the 2010/11 DKB FIS Nordic Combined World Cup, the German dived to first place which was assigned after a photo finish decision. Runner-up, 0.0 seconds behind, was Eric Frenzel (GER), career-ending Felix Gottwald (AUT) was third and 0.9 seconds behind.
Overall World Cup winner Jason Lamy Chappuis (FRA) came in in fifth (+1.1 seconds), just behind Jan Schmid (NOR/+1.0) and in front of Lukas Runggaldier (ITA/+1.9).
As on the day before, Haavard Klemetsen (NOR) was not to beat on the hill. He jumped 130.5 m for 137.5 points and won in front of Maxime Laheurte (126 m/131.5 points) and Wilhelm Denifl (126 m/130.8 points). His initial advantage was 24 seconds in front of the Frenchman and 27 in front of the Austrian. Eric Frenzel, seventh, trailed by 53 seconds, Jason Lamy Chappuis, eighth, by 58. The later winner was in twelfth position, 1:12 minutes behind.
During the Cross-Country race, Klemetsen was able to maintain the lead for almost five out of ten kilometers, but was caught by a group of twelve athletes. From behind, Felix Gottwald made up ground and went in the fourth and last lap into the lead. The final was nail-biting, with six sprinting for the three top spots.
Rydzek was the strongest, fastest and luckiest one. He’s the 56th winner of an individual race in FIS Nordic Combined World Cup history since 1983/1984.
Felix Gottwald, who was 23rd after the jumping portion, was the fastest on the track; he covered the ten kilometers in 22:51.2 minutes. Half-time leader Klemetsen finished in seventh position.
Today’s Top Three:
1. Johannes Rydzek (GER) 119.6 (12) 23:23.3 (5) 24:35.3 minutes
2. Eric Frenzel (GER) 124.2 (7) 23:42.3 (15) +0.0
3. Felix Gottwald (AUT) 111.2 (23) 22:51.2 (1) +0.9
Final Overall World Cup Standings:
1. Jason Lamy Chappuis (FRA) 894, 2. Mikko Kokslien (NOR) 656, 3. Felix Gottwald (AUT) 638, 4. Eric Frenzel (GER) 554, 5. Mario Stecher (AUT) 481, 6. Johannes Rydzek (GER) 442.
Full standings: http://www.fis-ski.com/pdf/2011/NK/4013/2011NK4013WC.pdf
Final Nations Cup Standings:
1. Austria 2568, 2. Norway 2230, 3. Germany 2148, 4. France 1729, 5. Japan 653, 6. Italy 629, 7. USA 322, 8. Switzerland 305, 9. Finland 251, 10. Czech Republic 208, 11. Slovenia 85, 12. Poland 5, 13. Estonia 1.
Johannes Rydzek - first
“I never ever expected that the 2010/11 season would develop and end like this. I wanted to be better than in the last winter, but, wow, Junior World Champion, three times Silver medal winner at the Worlds in Lahti, winner of a World Cup event – that’s amazing.”
“Today, I was lucky to skate in a big group, and I have to say thank you to the athletes who made the pace. At the finish line, I was the luckiest one.”
Eric Frenzel – second
“It was a good day for me, with a nice jump and a nice race. I had to make a lot of pacing. Overall, I’m satisfied with second place.”
“The last weeks were quiete stressful, I’m happy that the season’s over now.”
Felix Gottwald - third
“This was my last race, and there were some emotions knowing that this was my last competition jump, and this was my last 10 km Gundersen competition race.”
“My strategy on the track was as always: to run fast and to go for victory. In Kuusamo at the beginning of the saeson, I came back from two minutes behind, today, I came from 1:45 behind and made it almost to first place.”
“I’m grateful for my time in the Nordic Combined scene, I had good days and bad moments, I learned a lot – but now it is time to move on.”