Karl Geiger fell into the arms of his teammates and laughed as he celebrated his perfect weekend. The 30-year-old dominated the German ski jumping home game in Klingenthal. With two victories, he catapulted himself into the circle of absolute top favorites for the Four Hills Tournament. "Yes!" he roared in the run-out of the jump.
"He's mentally very strong. What he did here today and yesterday was very, very good," said national coach Stefan Horngacher, who nevertheless stated on ARD: "There are still a few reserves."
Geiger came in third ahead of the second-placed Swiss Gregor Deschwanden and Andreas Wellinger. In a thrilling competition, Geiger jumped 141 and 141.5 meters.
Geiger shows: Stefan Kraft can be beaten
The day before he had given the German jumpers their first victory of the season and made it onto the winner's podium for the first time this winter. “I never thought I would win,” he said afterwards. The fact that it worked a second time was even more impressive. Geiger was also the first jumper this winter to show that the Austrian series winner Stefan Kraft can be beaten. The 30-year-old had won all of the first four World Cup competitions. Kraft now took second and ninth place.
But national coach Horngacher didn't just highlight Geiger. Looking at the entire team, the coach said: “Great team, great atmosphere, great success!”
DSV Adler in strong form
In a way, this statement can be applied to the entire season so far. With strong individual results and impressive team unity, the DSV Eagles have positioned themselves in the fight for the Golden Eagle a good two and a half weeks before the tour. 22 years after Sven Hannawald's triumph, the longed-for tour victory should finally happen this year. Two Germans currently seem to be eligible for a place at the top of the tour and are likely to be full of self-confidence.
In addition to Geiger, Wellinger also had reason to be happy. The 28-year-old didn't just jump to third place. His jump to 146.5 meters in the second round, with which he, like Deschwanden, set the hill record in the Vogtland Arena, also caused feelings of happiness.
“The jump was really fantastic,” said Horngacher enthusiastically. "That gives hope for more." Wellinger has already made it onto the podium four times in six competitions this season. In addition to Geiger and Wellinger, Pius Paschke and Stephan Leyhe from the German team have already achieved top three places. On Sunday, Paschke came eighth, Leyhe took tenth place.
Granerud, Kubacki and Zajc with problems
However, numerous international top jumpers are currently having problems: last year's tour winner Halvor Egner Granerud from Norway, the Pole Dawid Kubacki and the Slovenian world champion Timi Zajc have so far fallen far short of their own expectations.
In a year without the Winter Olympics and World Cup, the tour is undoubtedly the big highlight of the season. It is becoming increasingly unlikely that Markus Eisenbichler - a main German protagonist of the ski jump spectacle for many years - will be there again. The 32-year-old is looking for form in the second-tier Continental Cup. This weekend he only finished 14th and 23rd there.