2013 to 2014 season
Sara is overall champion again again
Sara Takanashi who was 4th in the Sochi Winter Olympic Games won on the 14th leg of the World Cup on March 1. With this victory, she has secured her World Cup title for the 2nd season in a row.
2012 to 2013 season
On Feb 17, for the first time a Japanese won the overall title for the World Cup. Its 16 year old Sara Takanashi, making her the youngest ever champion in both men and women's ski jump. It's with her 8th World Cup win.
2004 to 2005 season
Funaki back on top
Kazuyoshi Funaki jumped 144 meters in his first try, and since the 2nd try was cancelled, he won. This was during the World Cup in Sapporo on Feb 5 It's the first time this season that a Japanese was victorious in the ski jump event.
2003 to 2004 season
Oldest World Cup winner
On Feb 28, in Utah, Noriaki Kasai became the oldest man to mark a World Cup victory. It's at 31 years and 8 months old. In the large hill event, he jumped 120.5 and 122.5 meters. It's his first World Cup win this season and his 15th total.
2002 to 2003 season
Kasai's third medal at championships
Noriaki Kasai did it again on Mar 1 at the World Championship in Val Di Femme, Italy. In the nordic ski, normal hill ski jump, his first jump gave him only 7th place. But he recorded 104 meters in his 2nd jump, giving him the bronze medal. It's his third medal at the world championships already this year.
Japan wins team silver at championships
In the team ski jump event's large hill at the World Championship for nordic ski in Val Di Fiemme, Italy on Feb 23, Japan clinched the silver. It's the first time in 2 years that Japan won a championship medal in the team event. Jumpers were Noriaki Kasai,Hideharu Miyahara, Kazuyoshi Funaki and Hikaru Azuma.
Kasai wins World Championship medal
At the World Championship for nordic ski in Val Di Fiemme, Italy on Feb 22, Noriaki Kasai jumped 131 meters for his first try in the large hill event. His 2nd jump also reached 130.5 meters. He clinched 3rd place. It's the first time ever for Kasai to win a medal in the individual event of a ski jump in the championship and at the Olympic Games. Hideharu Miyahara was the Japanese placing the 2nd highest finishing 5th.
Kasai ties with Funaki
At the World Cup event in Willingen, Germany on Feb 9, Noriaki Kasai flew 147 meters in the large hill event to win. It's his 14th World Cup victory, tying with the Japan record held by Kazuyoshi Funaki. Hideharu Miyahara jumped to win 2nd place.
2001 to 2002 season
Japan 2nd in team event at home
In Sapporo on Jan 27, the Japanese team comprising of Noriaki Kasai, Daiki Yamada, Kazuyoshi Funaki and Hideharu Miyahara finished 2nd, after Austria. But the members did not seem happy. The reason appears to be that they were 50 points below the winner. And taking into account that top teams were not there, the concern is that Japan may not do so well at the coming Salt Lake Games.
Kasai is third
At last in the individual ski jump event a Japanese got to finish on the podium. It's Noriaki Kasai in Sapporo on Jan 26. He jumped 124 and 120.50 to finish third. It's been a year for himself to be in the top 3.
Japan shaping up
In the World Cup ski jumping team event held in Villach, Austria on Dec 9, Japanese jumpers came in 2nd. The jumpers were Kazuya Yoshioka, Hideharu Miyahara, Noriaki Kasai and Kazuyoshi Funaki. In the previous World Cup event, Funaki was 3rd twice showing that he was slowing getting back into shape in time for the Salt Lake Winter Games.
2000 to 2001 season
no medal at championships
In the World Championships held in Lahti, Finland until Feb 25, Japan finished with no medals. The best it did was coming in 4th in the team events in the large and normal hills. It's the first time in 6 years for a medal less championships.
Japan victorious as team
At the site for the next Winter Games, Japan finished 1st in the World Cup on Jan.19 in the team event. For Japan, the jumpers were Masahiko Harada, Kazuya Yoshioka, Kazuyoshi Funaki. Noriaki Kasai who was the last one to perform recorded 130 meters to give Japan it's first victory in 2 years.
Kasai takes Four Hills event
Noriaki Kasai jumped 126 and then 122 meters in Garmish-Partenkirchen, Germany on Jan.1. His 2nd performance was given a near perfect score, to give Kasai the top post in the second leg of the Four Hills tour. Kasai has come in 2nd in the Four Hills before. It's the first time in 2 seasons that a Japanese clinched first place in the World Cup.
Japan takes top medal spots
In the Four Hills competition of the World Cup on Dec. 29 in Obertsdorf, Germany, Noriaki Kasai jumped 116.5 and 128.5 meters,and Masahiko Harada 119.5 and 128. Kasai took 2nd and Harada 3rd. It's the first time in 2 seasons that Japan clinched 2 of the 3 top places in the World Cup.
1999 to 2000 season
Japan takes time to win medal in WC
In the 8th of the World Cup series held on Jan. 1 in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, Japan clinched the season's first medal. Veteran jumper Masahiko Harada marked 116 and 112 in the large hill event finishing 2nd. Kazuyoshi Funaki ranked a disappointing 14th.
1998 to 1999 season
Kasai breaks season record
In the final World Cup event held in Planica, Slovenia on Mar. 21, Noriaki Kasai not only broke the Japan record in the flying competition with a 214 meter leap, he won it--giving him this season's 6th World Cup victory which is the most a Japanese has ever marked. He finished the overall season 3rd place, surpassing teammate Kazuyoshi Funaki. Hideharu Miyahara came in 2nd in the final competition. As for country based standing, Japan clinched first place for the 3rd straight year.
More victory for Kasai
In Oslo, Norway on Mar. 14, Noriaki Kasai jumped 123 meters, then 117.5 meters for the top place. It's his 5th World Cup victory during the season--a tie record for a Japanese. Kazuyoshi Funaki was 3rd.
It's Kasai's turn to win again
At the World Cup in Tronheim, Norway on Mar. 9, it was Noriaki Kasai who jumped to first place. It was in the large hill event. He recorded a whooping 132.5 meters in his the first jump, and 127.5 for his second. It's his total 10th World Cup victory. Masahiko Harada came in 3rd for the first time this season. Meanwhile, Kazuyoshi Funaki was not even able to proceed to the 2nd round. His overall World Cup ranking fell to 3rd place.
Funaki's 3rd win of the season
In Lahti, Finland on March 6, Kazuyoshi Funaki was victorious. It's his third time in this season's World Cup. He did it in one jump. The 2nd jump was cancelled due to harsh weather. This win has surged Funaki's overall World Cup standing to 2nd place.
Japan dominates first 3 places in championships
In the normal hill event at the World Championships in Ramsau on Feb.26, Japanese fliers dominated all medals. Easy going Masahiko Harada came in third, up and coming Hideharu Miyahara second, and Olympic champion Kazuyoshi Funaki first. It's the first time since the 1972 Sapporo Winter Games that Japan achieved such a feat in the world championships.
2nd victory for Kasai
On Jan. 31, Noriaki Kasai recorded 127, and 128 meter jumps for 1st place at the World Cup in Germany. Funaki was second.
Funaki is at last on top
Kazuyoshi Funaki captured first place in the World Cup large hill event on Jan. 10 in Switzerland. It's his first this season and his 9th World Cup victory. Funaki's first jump stretched to 129.5 meters and his 2nd, 130 meters. Noriyuki Kasai was awarded 3rd place.
First victory for a Japanese
Veteran jumper Noriaki Kasai jumped 109.5 meters at Innsbruck in Austria on Jan. 3. His second jump which reached 108 meters gave him the top spot. It's the first time a Japanese clinched 1st place this season. Kasai, however, mentioned that he was not happy with neither jumps. Another Japanese who is not so famous, Hideharu Miyahara came in 3rd. Well-loved Masahiko Harada was 4th.
Funaki at third in Lillehammer
Nagano Olympic champion, Kazuyoshi Funaki was 3rd on Nov.29 in the second of the World Cup series in the large hill. Masahiko Harada did not fair well at 23rd place.
1997 to 1998 season
Funaki finishes the season second
In the final ski jumping competition for the World Cup series was held in Planica, Slovenia, Kazuyoshi Funaki finished 4th. He unfortunately was unable to jump far enough to clinch the overall title. He had jumps of 126.5 and 132 meters. Funaki finished the season at second place in overall standing. The season's World Cup title went to Primoz Peterka of Slovenia. The Japanese jumper who astonished the crowd in the final World Cup was Noriyuki Kasai. He gave a record breaking 147.5 meter jump. He had not have a World Cup crown since Jan. 1994. It's his 6th World Cup win. Meanwhile, Hiroya Saitoh was second.
Michiyo's Note: It is said that the Austrian ski jumpers were puzzled, because Japanese jumpers did not support Funaki. That is, if Kasai and Saitoh didn't jump to 1st and 2nd places, then Funaki would have at least made it to 2nd place and he would have accummulated points to his overall standing for the seasonal title. At least, from my personal view, the Japanese competed fairly. In addition, Funaki would probably not have been happy anyway if he won the title that way.
Funaki raises hope
On Mar. 21, in Planica, Slovenia, Kazuyoshi Funaki jumped 136.5 meters in his first try in the World Cup large hill. His second jump went as far as 140 meters. He was immensely victorious this time. Austrian Andreas Widhoelz finished only 24th. Funaki had surged to 2nd place in overall World Cup standing. There is still hope for him to become the first Japanese overall ski jumping champion with one more competition left. By the way, Hiroya Saitoh was third in the 26th of the World Cup series.
Harada may have a chance
Masahiko Harada came in 3rd in the World Cup large hill ski jumping event held in Oslo, Norway on Mar.15. As a result, Harada is 4th in the overall ranking, while Kazuyoshi Funaki, who finished a disappointing 12th dropped to 3rd place. The leader is Andreas Widhoelz of Austria.
Harada is back on top
In Tronheim, Norway, on Mar. 13, Masahiko Harada clinched his 5th World Cup victory. Harada jumped 125.5 and 123.5 meters. Noriaki Kasai was second. At last, the Japanese jumpers are showing their stuff. However, Kazuyoshi Funaki, is not yet back in shape finishing 27th.
Funaki is no longer on the top
For 5 World Cup event, Nagano Olympic gold medalist, Kazuyoshi Funaki was the overall top ranker. By finishing 6th in the large hill event in Falun, Sweden on Mar.11, he dropped from the post. The overall first has gone to Andreas Widhoelz of Austria.
Post Olympic feat
It wasn't Funaki, nor was it Harada who surged to first place in the World Cup flying event on Mar. 1 in the 19th World Cup series. It was Takanobu Okabe, one of the members of the gold winning Japanese team who took the top place at the competition in Vikersund, Norway. Okabe marked his first World Cup victory of the 97-98 season, and his 4th career total. Hiroya Saitoh, another Olympic team champion came in 2nd, and Noriaki Kasai was 3rd. Just for your information Kazuyoshi Funaki was 12th and Masahiko Harado decided not to fly in the 2nd round.
Harada breaks large hill record
Masahiko Harada flew longer than anybody ever did in an official competition of the large hill event. He marked 140.5 meters in the TV Hokkaido Cup held on Feb. 1 in Sapporo. He jumped 120. 5 meters in his 2nd attempt to secure his top place in the competition. All 8 of Japans Olympic jumpers came in within 10th place.
Funaki flies high
In the first leg of World Flying Championships held in Oberstdorf, Germany on Jan.24, Kazuyoshi Funaki jumped 191.1 meters and 187.5 meters. He came in second. Then in the second leg the following day, Funaki jumped even longer. His first jump extended to 203 meters. Greater even was his final jump which measured 205.5 meters. It's the first time Funaki clinched the flying title. Furthermore, the competition is a part of the World Cup series for ski jumping and the victory gave him his 4th World Cup crown this season. Funaki has surpassed Masahiko Harada in the overall standing for the World Cup title with the win.
Japan dominates in normal hill
The Japanese jumpers are invincible. On Jan. 11, they took all 3 places, this time in the 12th of the World Cup series in the normal hill held in Ramsau, Austria. The winner was Masahiko Harada. Kazuyoshi Funaki was 2nd and Hiroya Saitoh 3rd. For Harada, this is his 8th World Cup victory.
Funaki wins 3rd World Cup in a row
Kazuyoshi Funaki is incredible! He's clinched his 3rd straight World Cup win in the large hill on Jan. 4 in Innsbruck, Austria. In the first round, it was actually Masahiko Harada who was the leader. But Funaki proved superior in his second jump which extended to 113 meters. Funaki, as a result, has tied with the legendary Yukio Kasaya in the World Cup consecutive win record. Moreover, Funaki has secured his place as the overall Four Hills champion. He is the first Japanese to do so. It was just too bad he finished 8th in the last of Four Hills competition on Jan. 6 held in Bischofshofen, Austria.
Japan dominates top 3 posts
In the World Cup Nordic Ski large hill competition held in Germany on New Year's Day, Japan achieved incredible results. Kazuyoshi Funaki came in first, Masahiko Harada followed, and Hiroya Saitoh place 3rd. It's the first time ever that the Japanese clinched all top 3 positions in the World Cup. The most incredible result in ski jump before that was at the 1972 Sapporo Olympic Winter Games. All 3 ski jump medalists were Japanese.
Funaki ties with Harada
Kazuyoshi Funaki was the one to clinch the World Cup large hill event in Germany on Dec. 29. This is his 7th lifetime World Cup victory, tying with Masahiko Harada. Funaki jumped 116 meters and 117 meters. Runner up was Hiroya Saitoh. It's the 5th time Japanese skiers finished 1st and 2nd in the World Cup ski jump.
Harada breaks Japanese record
Masahiko Harada jumps to another victory in Engelberg, Switzerland on Dec. 21. His 2nd jump in the large hill event extended to 123.5 meters to mark his 3rd victory this season. In all, it's his 7th World Cup gold. He surpassed Kazuyoshi Funaki's career total of 6. Harada, no doubt, leads in the overall standing of the World Cup series. Harada's previous 1st place was in the normal hill on Dec. 12 in Harrachov, Czech Republic. He was 3rd after his 1st attempt jumping 95.5 meters. The 2nd jump was 94 meters.
Harada's first World Cup victory in 97-98 season
Japan's ace Masahiko Harada jumped 95 meters in the normal hill event to clinch his first World Cup win this season. Harada became the first Japanese to win this season too on Dec.8. His first jump was 90.50 meters.
1996 to 1997 season
Ski flying victories
Takanobu Okabe flew 207 meters for his 2nd jump in the ski flying event at the World Cup in Planica, Slovenia on Mar.22. Okabe finished 1st place for the 3rd time this season. Kazuyoshi Funaki came in after him. However, Okabe was disqualified for the second leg the next day. Akira Higashi won instead by jumping 202 and 203 meters for his 2nd World Cup ever on the final day.
Funaki wins again
Kazuyoshi Funaki jumped 125.5 meters for his second jump in the large hill event at the Nordic Ski World Cup in Norway on Mar.16. He won his 6th World Cup gold medal and his 4th title this season. Another Japanese, Hiroya Saitoh came in second.
5th World Cup gold for Funaki
21 year-old Kazuyoshi Funaki clinched his 5th gold medal in the Nordic Ski World Cup normal hill event on Mar.12, tying with the Japanese record held by Noriaki Kasai. It's the third time Funaki has become number one in the 96-97 World Cup season. His first jump was a whooping 97 meters. He jumped 86.5 meters the second time.
Japan's first large hill medal
Masahiko Harada jumped 128 meters off the platform on Mar.1 after the first jump which marked 124 meters. This was at the Nordic ski world championships in Trondheim, Norway. The successful jumps have given Harada the first gold medal for a Japanese ever in the large hill event at the world championships.
Harada sweeps the gold
Masahiko Harada swept all gold medals available at the World Cup event in Lahti, Finland from March 1 to 3. He first won the normal hill competition, then led his team to a victory in the team event. On the final day, he took first place in the large hill competition.
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