I know you’re thinking the Holmenkollen Ski Jump is in Norway and there is a lot of raw air in this country during the winter time. It is colder this year than last, but is still pleasant. After all it is winter!!! And there is much more snow throughout the country side this year than last. But Raw Air 2018 is the second edition of a new competition in Norway within the World Cup Ski Jumping Competition.
History of Raw Air
Raw Air was initiated in 2017. It’s a 10 day tournament taking place at four different jumping hills (Oslo, Lillehammer, Trondheim and Vikersund which is a ski flying hill). World Cup points are accumulated as always but the points each jumper accumulates in qualifying, individual competition and team competition for the 16 jumps over 10 days are carried forward after each jump to determine the scoring for Raw Air. The format was unique within the World Cup. Consistency from jump to jump is extremely important if one wants to remain on top of the Raw Air leader board.
There is also a first prize of 60,000 euros that is given to the winner with 30,000 euros for second place and 10,000 euros for third. Ski jumping is not a big prize money sport, so these figures were a big boost for the jumpers. In fact, other competitions on the World Cup schedule have developed similar formats this past year. But this is the only one that has the demands of jumping each day for 10 consecutive days of competition. It is called “The Most Extreme and Intense Ski Jumping Tournament in the World”!!
After 16 jumps in the 2017 edition, the winner was determined in the very last jump. The winner was Stefan Kraft from Austria. It was that excitement that brought me back this year!
The History of Ski Jumping
Ski jumping originated in Norway in the 19th century. It was in 1808 when Olaf Rye, a Norwegian-Danish military officer, made the first ever recorded jump in front of his soldiers. That jump was how long? It was 9.5 meters or about 31 feet!!
Another interesting fact about Olaf Rye. Danish soldiers have been part of the peacekeeping troops in Kosovo since the 1999 war. Their camp’s name? Camp Olaf Rye!!!
Jumping was first contested in 1866. It was the first competition with prizes and was held in Norway. In the early 20th century, ski jumping spread throughout the rest of Europe and into North America. Ski jumping became a part of the Winter Olympics in 1924 and has been featured at every Olympics since then.
The Holmenkollen Ski Jump
This Holmenkollen ski jump is known by the Norwegians as Holmenkollbakken and is the featured image in today’s post. It is located in Holmenkollen, a neighborhood in a borough of Oslo. The first ski jumping competition in 1866 was held in another part of Norway but was moved to the Holmenkollen in 1892.
As you can see in the featured image for today’s post, there are many places in the arena for one to view the competition When the arena provides it, I enjoy standing right next to the landing area on the jumping hill. The Holmenkollen ski jump offers this opportunity.
On the video screen, I can watch the jumper come down the jump (inrun), transition on to the table (the end of the jump), leave the jump and begin their flight down the hill. It is the perfect place to be about 20 m (65 ft) from the jumpers as they land. Watching their flight this close, I can see how in control they are and at the same time how close they are to being out of control. It’s a very unique perspective.
One more set of jumps on Sunday and then moving on to Lillehammer.