Bryan Fletcher capped a breakthrough seaosn by winning the 10km Gundersen start format Nordic Combined race at the fabled Holmenkollen Ski Stadium in Oslo, Norway.
Fletcher posted the third best jump and then proceeded to boldly bridge up to Kato Taihei (JPN) at approximately 6k.
The American had been skiing with a large chase group, but the pack could not manage the pace and only Storlien Godmund (NOR) could follow Fletcher up. He couldn’t make it all the way, and Fletcher and Taihei skied together for the next several kilometers attempting to keep the now closing chase pack at bay.
Taihei faltered and slipped to third, while Fletcher held on to claim both his first podium and victory of his World Cup career.
“This is a dream come true. To win in Holmenkollen is every nordic combined athlete’s dream,” Fletcher said after the race. “To have it be my first makes it even better. After having such a great season and for this to be the stamp to it is amazing. Just going into today I was thinking that the only goal I didn’t accomplish this season was a podium. I spoke too soon! This is unbelievable.”
Fletcher’s result headlined a strong last day of the World Cup season. Billy Demong placed 4th on the strength of the fourth fastest ski time, and Johnny Spillane was 15th.