(L-R) Anders Fannemel of Norway, Kamil Stoch of Poland and Andreas Wellinger of Germany celebrate on the podium after the fourth and final stage of the Four Hills Ski Jumping tournament in Bischofshofen, Austria
Bischofshofen (Austria) (AFP) - Poland’s Kamil Stoch on Saturday became just the second man in history to complete a Four Hills clean sweep when he triumphed on the prestigious event’s final leg at Bischofshofen in Austria.
Germany’s Sven Hannawald, in 2001⁄2002, was the only ski jumper to have previously achieved the feat.
On Saturday, Stoch won with leaps of 132.5m and 137m ahead of Norway’s Anders Fannemel (130m + 139m) and Germany’s Andreas Wellinger (129m + 139.5m).
“I was under a lot of pressure, we are not machines, we are humans,” said 30-year-old Stoch who also won the Four Hills last year and will be favourite to defend his two titles at the Winter Olympics next month.
“Believe me, I don’t concentrate on victory; I just try to do my best,” added two-time world champion Stoch.
Hannawald was among the first to congratulate Stoch.
“Welcome to the exclusive club,” said the German. “Before I could only to talk to myself but now I can talk to you!”
In the overall Four Hills standings, Wellinger finished in second place while Fannemel was third.
Stoch, who started ski jumping at nine, stunned the sport when he leapt 128 metres at the age of 12.
His progress in the professional ranks stalled for two seasons when he underwent ankle surgery in 2014.
Stoch attributed his rejuvenation this year to the arrival of new Polish national coach Stefan Horngacher, an Austrian.
“We now have an excellent team spirit, each athlete believes in him,” said Stoch.
“Stefan has changed some small things in my momentum and training but it is especially the psychological approach that is different with him.”