Takanashi improves in ski jump win


Women’s World Cup champion Sara Takanashi continued her preparations for next year’s Sochi Olympics with a superb performance on Sunday.

The 16-year-old Takanashi was the only jumper to clear the K point on both jumps, while showing solid form in her Telemark landings, an area that has routinely given her trouble.

She cleared 81.5 meters on her first leap and had an effort of 82 meters on her second run — the day’s longest jump — for a total of 235.5 points. Yuki Ito placed second, while Ayumi Watase was third.

“It was a good overall performance,” Takanashi said after winning the Shiozawa ski jump meet for the third time in her career. “Little by little, I’m making progress.”

Hitting both of her landings smoothly was a triumph in itself as she appeared to correct her habit of leaning too far forward as she transitioned out of her jumping posture.

“I’m seeking the ability to do it perfectly,” said Takanashi.