Ski flying: Kobayashi wants to break the 300 meter mark on a secret ski jump

Ski flying: Kobayashi wants to break the 300 meter mark on a secret ski jump

Sports Ski flying

Daring long distance hunt – Kobayashi wants to crack the 300 meters on a secret jump

As of: 5:56 p.m. | Reading time: 3 minutes

Exceptional athlete: Ryoyu Kobayashi is one of the outstanding ski jumpers

Source: dpa/Geir Olsen

Shaky camera images from Iceland are currently causing quite a stir. To see: a makeshift giant ski jump and an athlete flying into the depths. It is likely to be an – unofficial – attempt to advance into new dimensions in ski flying. That failed in 2011.

Even the best and most experienced ski jumpers are more tense, more excited and even more full of anticipation when they are not fighting for every meter on the normal or large hill, but when it comes to the monster slopes. When distances beyond the 200 meter mark are possible, when the dimensions are larger in all areas. Ski flying is the supreme discipline; there are only four usable ski jumps in the world that no one is allowed to use apart from direct training before competitions.

Now there is a fifth monster bake. One built in secret. One that has not been tested and approved by the world association. One that is not official. Built to cause a sensation, to let a single top jumper test the limits and make the longest jump in the history of ski flying. The athlete: Japan’s three-time Four Hills Tournament winner Ryoyu Kobayashi. Its sponsor is behind it. He had previously aimed for a similar long-distance hunt, but had also failed due to safety concerns.

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This time the temporary ski jump was built in a country that has nothing to do with ski jumping – where the public initially had little notice of it and therefore the ski jumping world didn’t: in Iceland. Shaky images from the Icelandic TV station RUV now show from a great distance how an athlete flies far into the run-out from the giant facility built on a mountain.

Kobayashi flies further than the world record

The plan is apparently to achieve a flight of 300 meters that has never been achieved before; it would be a completely new dimension: the current world record is 253.5 meters, set by the Austrian Stefan Kraft in 2017 in Vikersund (Norway). This is not an official world record either, because in order to prevent limitless and dangerous long-distance hunting, the FIS no longer officially recognizes these records. In general usage, however, we still talk about world records; more precisely, we would have to talk about the greatest distance ever achieved in an official competition.

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According to RUV information, Kobayashi flew to 256 meters on Tuesday and even 291 meters on Wednesday, according to information from the Polish portal “skijumping.pl”. There is nothing official about it, not even the unofficial widths. But they would definitely be amazing flights. And it is very likely that the Japanese will dare to make further attempts these days, and there will most likely be well-produced video material and precise distances afterwards. According to the Icelandic broadcaster, the Hlidarfjall ski area was temporarily closed especially for the record hunt. Kobayashi’s main sponsor Red Bull is said to have signed a contract with the city of Akureyri to build the ski jump. The energy drink company will accompany the whole thing with several drones and cameras.

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The company had already set its sights on the mission of chasing distances in ski flying in 2011 and built a giant ski jump in the Austrian Hohe Tauern National Park in order to allow an athlete sponsored by Red Bull to fly there. According to skisprung.com it should have been Gregor Schlierenzauer or Thomas Morgenstern. However, the plan never became a reality. Probably also because the Austrian Ski Association had concerns and denied its jumpers permission for safety reasons, as the “Salzburger Nachrichten” wrote at the time. “We consider this to be too dangerous,” said ÖSV spokesman Josef Schmid, “our athletes are therefore not allowed to start.”

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