Completing a gold-medal sweep of the weekend, nordic combined Olympian Bill Demong cruised to his third national title by winning the normal hill Sunday at the Nature Valley Ski Jumping Championships.STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colorado — Completing a gold-medal sweep of the weekend, nordic combined Olympian Bill Demong cruised to his third national title by winning the normal hill Sunday at the Nature Valley Ski Jumping Championships.
Demong, who is a skiing ambassador for the Olympic Regional Development Autority in Lake Placid, won the large-hill (HS127) and nordic combined titles Saturday. Sunday, he jumped 98 and 98.5 meters, good for 261.5 points.
Fellow combined skier Johnny Spillane was silver medalist with jumps of 90 and 89.5 meters (225.0) while up-and-coming junior Nick Fairall was bronze medalist in the contest on Howelsen’s 100-meter hill.
“It was outstanding: finish the season in the sun … in Steamboat … with a win … and my mother and sister out here. I’ve been very lucky in my life, but this has been a great streak. I’m really pleased, really proud,” Demong said. “Good to have Johnny on the podium, of course, but good for Nick, too. He’s an Eastern guy, and he’s a really hard worker. This is a big step for him.”
The victory brought Demong his sixth U.S. championship and closes a sizzling month of March that also saw a World Championships silver medal and World Cup victory in combined, thanks to a generous boost from his jumping. He has won three jumping titles and three nordic combined gold medals.
“It’s special to sweep the weekend like this. I’ve got some goals. I hope ‘m not done yet in winning titles.”
Demong said the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club crew at Howelsen Hill “deserve lots of credit for keeping the hill so good. It was awesome. We’ve had a lot of nationals in Steamboat and we’re usually fighting the sun. It was mostly cloudy but I’m not sure it never got below 40, maybe 45 this weekend, and they kept pumps going all night, kept salt on the hill and the in-run to keep things stable … and did just an outstanding job.”
In women’s ski jumping, Lindsey Van again led the field, collecting the 12th U.S. title of her career. She jumped 91 and 92 meters, receiving 234.5 points. Brenna Ellis earned the silver medal with jumps of 83 and 83.5 meters while high school student Avery Ardovino was bronze medalist.
2007 NATURE VALLEY SKI JUMPING CHAMPIONSHIPS
Steamboat Springs, Colo. March 25, 2007
(Jump distances in meters)
Normal hill (HS100)
1. Bill Demong, Vermontville, N.Y., (98, 98.5 meters) 261.5 points
2. Johnny Spillane, Steamboat Springs, Colo., (90-89.5) 225.0
3. Mick Fairall, Andover, N.H., (89.5, 90.5) 223.5
4. Brett Camerota, Park City, Utah, (91, 88.5) 222.5
5. Davis Miller, Steamboat Springs, Colo., (89.5, 89) 221.5
1. Lindsey Van, Park City, Utah, (91, 92) 234.5
2. Brenna Ellis, Park City, Utah, (83, 83.5) 192.0
3. Avery Ardovino, Park City, Utah, (82.5, 91.5) 187.0
4. Alissa Johnson, Park City, Utah, (81, 80) 182.5
5. Brittany Rhoads, Park City, Utah, (54, 57) 71.5