Hometown favorite Mikko Kokslien (NOR), who started the cross-country in 16th place, 1 minute and 4 seconds behind Braud Francois (FRA), won by 8.4 seconds over Lamy-Chappuis. Francois, who was first after a jump of 138.5 meters, ended up in 20th place overall. In the final kilometer of the race Kokslien dug into the reserves and beat the French Olympian to earn his first WC victory.
Kokslien jumped into the Norwegian national spotlight when he skied into second place in the World Cup opener in Finland last weekend, only narrowly beaten by Felix Gottwald (AUT). Lamy-Chappuis started the cross-country in third place, 18 seconds behind Francois, after a jump of 137 meters. Gottwald started in 32nd place, 1:50 behind.
Brett Camerota jumped the longest of the Americans, 126 meters, and started in 22nd place, 1:20 behind Francois. Bryan Fletcher jumped 119.5 meters and started in 35th place, 2:11 behind. Taylor Fletcher was 44th after the jumping (118.5 meters) and 2:30 behind, while Bill Demong (111 meters) started 3:20 behind. Except for Demong, who advanced from 53th to 45th over the 10K course, all had a tough time on the course and dropped spots in the overall.
Bryan Fletcher, who delivered his career best World Cup result in Finland last week when he hauled into 18th place, was not content with Saturday’s effort.
“Today was not as good as I hoped. The race was tough today. Slow snow and a course with not a ton of rest so it was a very challenging day for myself and for others,” Bryan Fletcher admitted to FasterSkier, but has already put the race behind him and preparing for the next.
“I am just focusing on tomorrow. Tomorrow is a new day and we will try again. Hopefully I will have a better go. Oh well,” he said.
Inge is FasterSkier's international reporter, born and bred in Norway. A cross-country ski racer and mountain runner, she also dabbles on two wheels in the offseason. If it's steep and long, she loves it. Follow her on Twitter: @IngeScheve.