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Küttel celebrates ski jump win in Engelberg

Andreas Küttel (centre) celebrates his victory in Engelberg

(Keystone)

Andreas Küttel has won Sunday's World Cup ski jumping event at the Swiss resort of Engelberg – the first Swiss to do so.

Küttel put an end to an attempt by Austrian Thomas Morgenstern, who had won the previous day's competition in the alpine village, to notch up seven straight victories.

Olympic champion Morgenstern was third and his compatriot Gregor Schlierenzauer was second.

Küttel, from Einsiedeln in central Switzerland, soared to a surprise victory in the large hill event with jumps of 125.5 metres and 136 metres to gain 252.7 points.

He also benefitted from the fact that the day's leader, Andreas Kofler from Austria, fell in the first round.

Küttel said that luck was on his side. "I'm happy with my performance and of course it's best when you're at home," he told Swiss television.

Another Swiss competitor, world champion and two times 2002 Olympic gold medallist Simon Ammann, fell in the first stage and finished 24th. Fellow Swiss Guido Landert was 31st.

"A fall is tough, I experienced it myself last week," commented Küttel.

No record

Küttel's victory on Sunday ended Morgenstern's attempt to achieve a record seven World Cup wins in a row.

The Austrian is already the first ski jumper to achieve six straight victories at the beginning of a season.

He shares the record of six victories with the Finns Matti Hautamäki and Janne Ahonen, although their wins were mid season.

Engelberg is Küttel's fifth World Cup triumph. His other victories were in Lillehammer, Norway, and Harrachov in the Czech Republic (both 2005), Kuopio, Finland (2006), and Garmisch-Partenkirchen in Germany (2007).

He finished 7th in Saturday's event at Engelberg.

Morgenstern still leads the overall World Cup standings heading into the prestigious Four Hills tournament, which begins in Oberstdorf in Germany on December 30. Küttel has now moved up to seventh in the rankings.

swissinfo with agencies

Key facts

Sunday's World Cup ski jumping event in Engelberg:
1. Andreas Küttel, Switzerland, 252.7 points (jumps of 125.5 and 136 metres)
2. Gregor Schlierenzauer, Austria, 248.9 (124.5/136)
3. Thomas Morgenstern, Austria, 246.6 (124.5/135)
***
24. Simon Ammann, Switzerland, 205,0 (123,5/126,5)
31. Guido Landert, Switzerland, 186,0 (116,5/113,5)

end of infobox

Andreas Küttel

Andreas Küttel was born April 25, 1979, in Einsiedeln. He is a qualified sports teacher.

The 28-year-old began competing in the World Cup in 1993. The biggest distance he has jumped is 204.5 metres at Planica in Slovenia (2004).

Overall, he has won five World Cup events.

end of infobox


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