Schlierenzauer becomes youngest-ever world champion

Other News Materials 23 February 2008 23:12 (UTC +04:00)

( dpa ) - Austrian Gregor Schlierenzauer on Saturday became the youngest Ski Flying World Champion on Saturday when he led an Austrian one-two.

27,000 spectators saw the 18-year-old beat compatriot Martin Koch into second place. Finland's Janne Ahonen finished third, while Norwegian Bjoern Einar Romoeren, who had led the standings after the two jumps on Friday finished fourth.

Schlierenzauer, who was 2.2 points behind Romoeren after Friday's jumps, was in outstanding form on Saturday and managed an excellent final jump of 211.5m to move past Koch, who was leading after the third jump.

The teenager celebrated his victory. "This is crazy. Two years ago I was still watching this competition and now I am the best ski flyer in the world. It is a dream."

Schlierenzauer scored 835.4 points from jumps of 212,0; 217,5; 208,5 and 211,5m to beat Koch by 10.7 points.

Two-time Olympic champion, Thomas Morgenstern, who ended a 12-year drought for Austria when he clinched the ski-jumping World Cup title in Willingen, finished seventh.