LJUBNO, SLOVENIA – Japan’s Sara Takanashi overcame difficult weather Sunday to claim her first World Cup victory of the season and end Maren Lundby’s winning streak.
At Ljubno’s Savina Ski Jumping Center, Takanashi triumphed in severe wind conditions that saw qualification cancelled and caused several delays over the two rounds of jumps. The 22-year-old posted leaps of 89.5 and 82.5 meters for 223.9 points, extending her individual World Cup win record to 56.
“I’m very happy,” Takanashi said. “The conditions were tough, but I just focused on my jumps. I want to thank my team for their support.”
Norway’s Lundby, the current overall leader, saw her six-event win streak ended and settled for silver with 221.8. Germany’s Juliane Seyfarth took third with 216.8.
“I am happy with today’s result. I managed to deliver two strong jumps, Sara was just unbeatable today,” Lundby said to the International Ski Federation (FIS).
Japan’s Yuki Ito and Yuka Seto, who along with Takanashi and Nozomi Maruyama were edged off the podium in the women’s team event on Saturday, finished 16th and 28th, respectively.
Lundby maintained her lead in the women’s standings with 1,168 points. Germany’s Katharina Althaus, who finished 10th on Sunday, is second (943) and Takanashi is third (806).
At a men’s competition in Lahti, Finland, Japan’s Ryoyu Kobayashi finished second as Kamil Stoch earned his second straight victory.
Kobayashi had jumps of 124 and 129.5 meters but was outdistanced by Poland’s Stoch, who claimed his 33rd World Cup win by over 17 points after recording jumps of 132.5 and 129. Norway’s Robert Johansson took third.
“It was nice we were able to have a really fun fight for the podium,” Kobayashi said. “I was lucky (to get wind on the second jump). Everyone was jumping well, it was a good competition. I’m really happy (with second place).”
The 22-year-old, who still leads Stoch by over 400 points in the standings, has now landed on the podium 14 times this season, tying veteran Noriaki Kasai for most in a season.
According to the FIS, Kobayashi is only two top-3 finishes away from exceeding Kazuyoshi Funaki as the Japanese jumper with the most podium finishes in a season.
Kobayashi’s older brother Junshiro and Daiki Ito finished 21st and 27th, respectively. Team Japan took bronze in the men’s team competition on Saturday.
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