• Kyodo


Junshiro Kobayashi claimed the men’s ski jumping title Sunday at the 2017-18 FIS Ski Jumping World Cup, topping the podium at the tournament for the first time.

Kobayashi, who was competing at his 63rd individual World Cup event, recorded leaps of 124.0 and 126.5 meters for a total of 260.5 points. Local favorite and Sochi Olympic double gold medalist Kamil Stoch (258.2) was runner-up and Austrian Stefan Kraft (257.7) was third.

Kobayashi became the 13th Japanese to win the men’s jumping event at the World Cup, and the first since 45-year-old veteran Noriaki Kasai won the competition in November 2014.

“It was amazing. I’m surprised that everything went so well,” said Kobayashi, whose best World Cup finish at an individual event was 13th. “I didn’t do so well on my first jump, but I just tried leaping like I always do on the second. I think that worked out.

“I still have competitions left so it’s difficult to stay in shape, but I want to do my best to post better results,” Kobayashi said.

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