LIBEREC, Czech Republic (Feb. 19) - Todd Lodwick (Steamboat Springs, CO) and Billy Demong (Vermontville, NY) led the way for the U.S. finishing first and third, respectively, in the cross country portion of a mass start at the 2009 Nordic Ski World Championships. Following the cross country, officials determined the wind in Liberec was too strong to safely and fairly hold the jumping competition, which was postponed.
"It was a little bit of a bummer. We were excited about getting this competition finished tonight. We felt like we were in a good spot with Todd and Billy's races," U.S. Nordic Combined Head Coach Dave Jarrett said. "Even if we could have had just one jump tonight and just finished it, that would have been great."
According to Jarrett, conditions on the jumping hill started out fine, but the wind became too strong by the time the final jumping rounds were to start.
"The wind was OK in the trial run. Both Billy and Todd jumped OK in the trial round, but it was all over the place when they started the final round. It just kept getting more outside of the limits they would allow for competition and they had no choice but to cancel," Jarrett said. "It's a little bit hard to deal with, but we deal with it often so that the guys are trained well at handling it."
The decision on when to hold the competition is yet to be made, but as far as Jarrett is concerned, nothing changes in the Team's approach.
"We're going to approach it the same way. We just need to jump as far as we can," Jarrett said.