Lodwick second in nordic combined in Kuusamo; Manninen second

Lodwick second in nordic combined in Kuusamo; Manninen secondWorld Cup champion Hannu Manninen of Finland won a Nordic combined event Sunday, capturing the ski jump and 7.5-kilometer sprint ahead of Todd Lodwick of the United States. Johnny Spillane of the United States, last year’s Nordic combined sprint world champion, finished fifth.

Manninen started 58 seconds behind Lodwick, who won the ski jump with a 135-meter effort worth 135 points _ the day’s longest jump. Manninen overtook Lodwick halfway into the race and won by 42 seconds.

“My intention was to follow Lodwick, to even the pace a bit after the brisk opening, and save some ammo for the finish,” Manninen said. “But I went past him, skiing at my own pace without forcing. Lodwick did not keep up, so this victory came in easy fashion.”

The day before, the Finn cut a 2:35 deficit in the 15K to beat Lodwick for second place. On Sunday, Lodwick safely held second place. Germany’s Ronny Ackermann, winner of the first event on Saturday, was only 21st in the jumping and started 1:23 behind Lodwick. Ackermann skied strongly and finished third, ahead of Austria’s Felix Gottwald, who rose from 25th place.

In the World Cup, Manninen took the lead after two events. He has 180 points, with Ackermann at 160 and Lodwick at 140. -The Associated Press

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