Watabe closes gap with win
Sun, 26 Feb 12:10:00 2012
Japan's Akito Watabe closed the gap on France’s FIS World Cup leader Jason Lamy-Chappuis as he claimed Nordic Combined victory in Liberec.
The 23-year-old came home comfortably clear of the field in the final 10km cross country, finishing in 26 minutes and 17.2 seconds, a full 18.2 seconds clear of Lamy-Chappuis in second, with Austria’s Mario Stecher in third.
However despite seeing his closest rival edge closer to him in the World Cup standings, second place was not a disaster for Lamy-Chappuis who endured a horror day yesterday when he finished 21st.
The 2010 Olympic gold medallist now has 1253 points, 183 ahead of nearest rival Watabe with just three events remaining.
If he is able to hold off the threat of the Japanese star, Lamy-Chappuis will pick up his third straight FIS Nordic Combined World Cup title.
HS 100 & Gundersen