PYEONGCHANG, Gangwon Province -- Matjaz Pungertar of Slovenia beat fellow countryman Zima Rok and Germany’s Julian Musiol to claim his first career title at the PyeongChang FIS Continental Cup title Wednesday.
The 20-year-old had the day’s longest effort of 134.5 meters on the K-125 hill and followed up with a 128-meter leap to win the title with a total of 249.5 points at the Alpensia ski jump stadium.
“I’m really happy. This is my first career victory in the international level,” Pungertar said in a press conference.
“The slope was good, weather condition and everything was good,” he added.
Musiol jumped 129.5 meters in his first attempt, but his second jump of 121.5 meters left him 22.7 points behind the winner. And Rok Zima cleared 123 meters and 128 meters to finish in shared second place.
Korean national team Choi Heung-chul jumped 119 meters and 116.5 meters to finish in 12th place with 196.4 points, while Kim Hyun-ki came in 14th position with 195.3 points.
Korean national team ski jumper Choi Heung-chul soars through the air during the FIS Continental Cup ski jumping competition on Wednesday in PyeongChang, Gangwon Province. (Yonhap News)
National team manger Kim Heung-soo said he was disappointed about the team’s performance, and blamed it on a lack of practice.
“We were not allowed to practice at the Alpensia Resort. So our players had only the 10-day practice session in Europe before this competition,” Kim said.
“It’s pity that we had to go abroad. I hope we can use the facilities for the upcoming Winter Asian Games,” he added.
The ski jumping competition continues through Thursday.
The two-day competition is aimed at raising awareness of ski-jumping here. Through the event, PyeongChang is trying to grab worldwide attention in a bid to host the 2018 Winter Olympics.
By Oh Kyu-wook (firstname.lastname@example.org)