This year’s 4 Hills Tournament closed up with the traditional competition in Bischofshofen and brought up a new overall winner for the ski jumping fans – Dawid Kubacki. For Michael Hayböck and Stefan Kraft an exciting series of competitions full with sportive challenges ended. Above all the great atmosphere and the enormous support of the fans in Germany as well as in Austria at the home competitions will stay in mind.
Stefan Kraft started the 4 Hills Tournament strongly with a victory in the qualification of Oberstdorf and – with the 4th place on the next day – tightly missed the podium, which was led by Ryoyu Kobayashi (JPN) followed by Karl Geiger (GER) and Dawid Kubacki (POL). Michael Hayböck, who has been in search of his consistency during the season, showed his second best season result and reached the 14thplace.
The New Year’s jumping in Garmisch again showed to be a big challenge for the roommates Kraft and Hayböck. Both of them had a cold, but nevertheless showed militant performances and solid jumps – which at the end meant a 13th place for Stefan and a 28th place for Michi. The victory was taken by the only 19-year-old Marius Lindvik (NOR), who celebrated his first ever World Cup victory.
At the Bergisel in Innsbruck things were looking up. Stefan Kraft again was part of the best jumpers, but sadly again missed the 3rd place, just like in Oberstdorf. While Marius Lindvik (NOR) celebrated his second World Cup victory, Hayböck showed two dedicated jumps on the hill, on which he still holds the hill record, proved consistency and gained the 23th place.
Not until Bischofshofen the tight battle for the overall victory would be determined – the four athletes Kobayashi, Geiger, Kubacki and Lindvik were fighting for the overall victory. Again Stefan Kraft won the qualification and also Michael Hayböck showed good jumps and started with good feelings into the last competition of the 4 Hills Tournament. The athletes showed a great jumping show, during which Michi placed himself under the Top 20. Stefan Kraft once more fought amongst the best, but again had to be settled with the unappreciated 4th place. Finally, Dawid Kubacki won the competition with the two widest jumps of the day and also took the overall victory!
Therewith, in three of four competitions Stefan Kraft reached the bitter 4th place, but definitely showed that he can compete with the very best of the World Cup! Michael Hayböck could elaborate a good consistency during the tournament, showed solid results and will continue his way with spirit and heart.
As always the JumpandReach family was also a great supporter of Michl & Kraftl and on-site at the 4 Hills Tournament! During the home competitions in Innsbruck and Bischofshofen the mascots “Fin” and “Claw” were part of the crowd to cheer for Michi and Krafti and made sure to create a great atmosphere. Also ski jumper Chiara Hölzl took the chance to watch her JumpandReach colleagues in Bischofshofen and crossed her fingers for them!
Therefore all that’s left to say is: Bye bye 4 hills – we are already looking forward to next year!