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Ski jumper Takanashi retains crown

Kyodo

Sochi Olympics gold medal hope Sara Takanashi became the first ever to win three consecutive titles at the World Junior Ski Championships on Tuesday.

The 17-year-old ace nailed the day’s longest jumps with efforts of 100.5 meters in both rounds earning her a total of 262.9 points on the K-95, 106-meter hill. Coline Mattel of France was second and Norwegian Maren Lundby finished third.

“When I got here I wasn’t jumping as well as I wanted in practice, but I was able to do my best in the tournament,” said Takanashi, who made adjustments to her takeoff after two consecutive World Cup runnerup finishes. “Right now, I am having good jumps. My goal wasn’t to win three straight titles but, of course, I’m happy.”

Yuki Ito, who will also compete at next month’s Winter Games in Sochi, narrowly missed a podium finish in fourth with leaps of 96.5 and 94 meters for 241.2 points.