Nita Englund (shown here at the World Cup in Ljubno last season) set a hill record of 103.5 meters Sunday in Almaty, Kazakhstan (Getty Images/LightRocket- Rok Rakun)
ALMATY, Kazakhstan (Feb. 28, 2016) - The hill record on the HS106 meter jump fell for the second day in a row Sunday, this time into the hands of American Nita Englund (Florence, WI). Englund soared 103.5 meters on her second jump to finish seventh in a FIS Ski Jumping World Cup in Almaty. Japan’s Sara Takanashi continued her winning streak with a narrow come-from-behind win over Austria Daniela Iraschko-Stolz.
"I had no idea it was a hill record until hours later when I was in the hotel,” said Englund. “But I’m very happy because I have never had a hill record before! However, I'm still going to have nightmares about my landings. They need a lot of work."
Similar to Saturday, Englund came from behind, standing 13th after the first round with a jump of 93.5 meters. On her second ride, she punched it well down the hill at 103.5 meters to eclipse the 103.0-meter mark set by Takanashi on Saturday. Almaty had also been kind to Englund this summer when she scored a second place finish in a FIS Ski Jumping Summer Grand Prix.
“Nita's second jump today was one of her best since I met her,” said coach Vasja Bajc. “I feel happy for her. This season she invested much energy and motivation living alone in foreign country away of her family and friends on her own costs. She was dedicated to do something for her career from her first day and it is a joy to work with that kind of athlete even if we sometimes went through hard times.
“I am happy that technically yesterday's and today's second round jumps of both Nita and Tara were as I want to see them, but the telemark landing is still a problem.”
Tara Geraghty-Moats (W. Fairlee, VT) was 15th, backing up the 11th she scored on Saturday – her two best results of the season. She had jumps of 89.0 and 95.0 meters.
"I'm very excited to have finally gotten some satisfying results after a frustrating section mid season,” said Geraghty-Moats. "Hopefully we will have another competition, but if this is the last World Cup I'm very happy with how I ended the season. It was also especially great watch Nita set a new hill record here."
Officials are still working to re-schedule next weekend’s cancelled event in Rasnov, Romania. Takanashi currently leads the overall World Cup standings by 500 points over Iraschko-Stolz. Englund is 13th with Geraghty-Moats in 28th.