The German team led by Katharina Althaus won the Saturday’s ladies’ team event at the World Championships in Planica. Silver went to Austria and bronze to Norway.
It was a thrilling and very close competition at the normal hill in Planica. After the first round, Germany led with an advantage of only 12.3 points over fifth Japan. Five nations remained chances for a medal after four jumps. With each group of second round the outcome was getting more predictable. Germany was the most consistent team and had with Katharina Althaus the new World Champion on board.
On Thursday, Katharina Althaus celebrated her maiden title. On Saturday, she captured another gold in Planica to keep the dreams of winning all four golds alive. The newly crowned World Champion made up a strong and consistent team together with Anna Rupprecht, Luisa Goerlich and Selina Freitag.
Both Rupprecht and Freitag collected the highest total score in their groups and Althaus confirmed the team’s effort, showing to great jumps. The German team defeated Austria by 12.7 points and Norway by 15.2 points.
It was a tight fight between Austria (Chiara Kreuzer, Julia Muehlbacher, Jacqueline Seifriedsberger, Eva Pinkelnig) and Norway (Maren Lundby, Eiring Maria Kvandal, Thea Minyan Bjoerseth, Anna Odine Stroem) for silver.
After seven jumps the Norwegian team was in the second place, but Anna Odine Stroem landed at 95 meters which wasn’t long enough to overtake Austria after’s Pinkelnig jump on 98 meters.
The host nation, Slovenia, took the fourth place missing the medal by 9.5 points. The head coach requested a lower gate for Nika Kriznar, who closed the competition for the Slovenes, but she landed at 96 meters and didn’t receive the compensation (she needed 96.5 meters). However, the hazardous turn wouldn’t have been successful, even if Kriznar jumped 96.5 meters. Slovenia would still lose to Norway by more than 3 points.
The Japanese team competed on Saturday without Sara Takanashi, who had a serious fall on Friday in a training round. Even tough, they did really well and were in the game for the podium almost until the end. Eventually, Nozomi Maruyama, Yuka Seto, Ringo Miyajima and Yuki Ito took the fifth place.
The top six was completed by Canada after both Abigail Strate and especially Alexandria Loutitt showed a great effort. France finished in seventh and China in eighth.
A total of ten teams entered the competition. Poland and the USA didn’t make the cut for the final round.
On Sunday, ladies will take part in the mixed team competition and the next week the event at the large hill awaits.
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