Wellinger rises high to land normal hill gold
Germany’s Andreas Wellinger secured victory in the men’s individual normal hill at the Alpensia Ski Jumping Centre on Saturday 10 February, claiming the second gold medal of his burgeoning Olympic career.
A winner in the team large hill event at Sochi 2014, the 22-year-old German climbed up from fifth to first with a second-round jump of 113.5m, earning him a total of 259.3 points and giving him the gold ahead of Norwegians Johann Andre Forfang and Robert Johansson.
“I can’t believe it,” said Wellinger after mastering the windy conditions. “The second jump was especially amazing. To be on top like this, I can’t describe it. It’s crazy for me. I want to say thanks to my family and the team behind me. This wouldn’t work without them.”
“There are so many emotions streaming through me now. It’s hard to put it into words,” said Forfang, while fellow countryman Johansson was no less delighted with his bronze: “I feel really, really good. It’s fantastic. I started jumping on this hill on the first training days and it feels amazing to be carrying a bronze medal back.”
No repeat for Stoch
There was disappointment for Poland’s Kamil Stoch, who placed fourth to fall short in his bid to become the first man to defend the title. Meanwhile, his compatriot Stefan Hula led the competition at the end of the first round but finished one place lower in fifth.
Swiss 36-year-old Simon Ammann was unable to add to his record of four individual gold medals and had to settle for 11th place, while Japanese veteran Noriaki Kasai, who is competing in his eighth Games at the age of 45, finished 21st.
Thanks to Wellinger’s victory, Germany has become the first nation to win all four Olympic ski jumping events.