Nordic Combined
Olympic Champion
Bill Demong
through the 2012-13
World Cup Season

Bill Demong Flying
Olympic Gold for Bill Demong
  Bill Demong grew up in Vermontville NY in the northern Adirondacks and learned Nordic Combined skiing in Lake Placid. After a spectacular 2009 season (Gold at World Championship and King's Cup at Holmenkollen) Bill came back in 2010 ready for the Vancouver Olympics. His gold medal capped a four-medal Games for the US Team. We'll try to keep you up to date on the 2012-13 season right here.

(Last updated March 16, 2013)

2012-2013 World Cup Leaders
Final standings, 17 events

 1. Eric Frenzel         GER  1034

 2. Jason Lamy Chappuis  FRA   818

 3. Akito Watabe         JAP   721




16. Taylor Fletcher      USA   303

21. Bryan Fletcher       USA   256

37. Bill Demong          USA    58

59. Todd Lodwick         USA    11

60. Johnny Spillane      USA     9

See 2012 season report, week by week
Billy Skis to Gold!

After the 2010 Olympic season, the big three: Todd, Billy and Johnny, committed to Nordic Combined competition through the 2014 Games.

In July 2012, the guys combined three activities, training, biking, and watching the Tour de France. You can read more, on Billy's blog.

Todd skipped most of the 2011-12 World Cup season, but he wasn't home eating bon-bons and watching TV. Quite the reverse -- in early August, Todd proved that he's in shape and skiing well, winning the National Nordic Combined Championships in Park City, the 20th National crown of Lodwick's long and illustrious career.

Two weeks later, Lodwick led the new big five (the big three plus the two Fletcher brothers) on a quick trip to Sochi, Russia, site of the upcoming Olympics, for the first Summer Grand Prix, where he scored second place on Saturday, then stepped up to first place in the Sunday event. Billy followed in seventh place on Saturday and Johnny matched that with a 7th place on Sunday. See results for  Saturday  or  Sunday  from Sochi.

The World Cup Season Begins

Period I          

The season began on Saturday, November 24, in Lillehammer, Norway where the best ski jumpers and Nordic combined competitors in the world gathered for World Cup competition on the 1994 Olympic venue. Todd Lodwick, Bill Demong and the Fletcher brothers, Bryan and Taylor represented the U.S.
The host Norwegians enjoyed home cooking as Magnus Moan starting back in eighth position made up 68 seconds to win the opening Gundersen normal-hill sprint event. Top U.S. finisher was Lodwick who demonstrated good physical condition as he moved up from 40th in the jumping to finish 24th. Taylor Fletcher also moved up 16 places as he turned in the day's fastest time in the cross-country race to finish in 30th. Bryan Fletcher finished 36th and Demong followed in 43rd.

The boys struggled in Sunday's penalty race in Lillehammer, with Bryan Fletcher finishing 19th in the jumping but the other three missing the cut to the top 30 in jumping. Bryan held on for a 22nd place finish and nine World Cup points. Magnus Moan won his second event in a row, followed by Lamy Chappuis and Klemetsen.

Dec 1, Kuusamo FIN Bryan Fletcher notched a 14th place finish by jumping to 11th, then joining a large racing group until the final climb of the cross country race. Brother Taylor Fletcher was disqualified for a jumping suit violation while Lodwick and Demong did not qualify in the top 50. Defending World Cup champion Jason Lamy Chappuis won the jump, then held off Bryan's 13 man chase group to win the event and move into the lead in World Cup points. Sunday the U.S. will enter two 2-man teams in a relay event.

Dec 2 in Kuusamo Bryan & Taylor Fletcher teamed up to jump into nineth place, then joined a small racing group in a two man cross-country sprint, each man running 7.5 km, and finished nineth. A second team of Demong and Lodwick did not jump.

The events scheduled for Dec 8-9 in Erzurum, Turkey were canceled early so Billy took the opportunity to fly back to Park City to be with his family and train on his home hill. It was a short break as he hurried back for the next competition in Ramsau, AUT.

Dec 15 in Ramsau Bryan Fletcher jumped into sixth place and raced well, making up a few seconds and finishing eighth. Bill Demong and Taylor Fletcher started the XC race in 33rd and 37th, 72 & 75 seconds back, respectively, but moved up aggressively. Taylor finished 10th and Billy 16th. Magnus Moan of Norway jumped to third, then ran away with the race. Moan's win moved him into the World Cup lead ahead of defending champion Lamy Chappuis.
Todd Lodwick stayed in the U.S. to compete in the Continental Cup event in Park City. On Friday Todd won the event with young Michael Ward of Aspen finishing second. See FIS Results or USST Report
Todd won again on Saturday, earning him the right to return to World Cup competition. See FIS Results or USST Report
On Sunday Lodwick completed a sweep of the three weekend events, winning by well over half a minute. Eight younger U.S. skiers competed. See FIS Results or USST Report.
Dec 16 in Ramsau Bryan Fletcher moved up 40 seconds and 8 spots to place 17th, Our other boys didn't fare as well -- Billy finished far back, and Taylor didn't ski. Jason Lamy Chappuis finished second and again overtook Magnus Moan for the World Cup lead.

Period II          
The second period of the World Cup Nordic Combined season began after the holidays in Schonach, Germany, where the Saturday event was a 4-man team relay. The U.S. team of Lodwick, Demong and the Fletcher brothers jumped into sixth place with Demong posting the best jump of his group. In the 4x5 km cross country race, the boys moved up to third place with both Taylor Fletcher and Bill Demong recording the fastest legs in their respective groups. The bronze medal marked the team's first podium spot in a World Cup team event.
Sunday in Schonach brought a Normal Hill Gundersen event. Bryan Fletcher finished 22nd with brother Taylor in 26th and Lodwick in 32nd. Bill Demong missed qualifying by one spot and Johnny Spillane missed by eight.

Sat, Jan 12, Chaux-Neuve, France -- Organizers swapped the two planned events, moving the team sprint to Sunday and holding a conventional Gundersen race on Saturday. Taylor Fletcher recorded the day's fastest XC race, moving up from 35th to finish in 10th place. Lodwick finished 29th and Bryan Fletcher followed in 31st. Demong missed qualifying in the top 50.
The U.S. entered two 2-man teams in Sunday's 2x7.5 km large hill relay event. The Fletcher brothers jumped to 13th place and moved up to 7th in the XC race, while Spillane and Demong jumped to 17th and skied up to 13th.

Sat, Jan 19, Seefeld AUT -- After failing two weeks in a row to qualify among the top 50 jumpers, Billy was replaced by young Michael Ward in the start list for Saturday's Gundersen event. Neither Ward nor Johnny Spillane qualified in the top 50 so they cheered on the sidelines as their three teammates all moved up in the 10 km cross country race and scored World Cup points. Top qualifier Taylor Fletcher started in 28th position, 1:36 behind the top jumper Bernhard Gruber (AUT), but Taylor is fast. He soon worked his way up to join a good working group containing Norwegian strongmen Magnus Moan and Mikko Kokslien, and that group steadily pushed past slower skiers. In the end Moan finished second and Kokslien fourth. Fletcher placed a career-best fifth, two seconds off the podium, and again recorded the day's fastest cross country race. Brother Bryan Fletcher jumped to 35th and moved up to 24th, while Todd Lodwick jumped to 41st and raced up to finish 29th.
Taylor Fletcher on Podium! Sun, Jan 20 Organizers scrapped the scheduled team relay in favor of a standard Gundersen event. Taylor Fletcher, fresh off a career-best fifth place finish on Saturday, jumped to 21st place. In the cross country race, Fletcher turned on the afterburners and immediately started passing his competitors. At 1.4 km, the first timing point, Taylor had made up half a minute and joined a good six-man working group that was snapping at the heels of Magnus Moan and Mikko Kokslien. Fletcher and Akito Watabe soon joined Moan and Kokslien to form a strong working group that motored up through the field. Watabe couldn't keep up the pace and later even Moan was shelled off the back of this blazing little bunch. With a kilometer to go, Kokslien and Fletcher had caught the leader, Eric Frenzel of Germany. In the end it was Frenzel followed by Fletcher and Kokslien in a furious sprint 2.9 sec. back. The Norwegian won the sprint in a photo finish while Fletcher enjoyed the first podium finish of his World Cup career. Moan and Frenzel tightened up the World Cup points race as they both moved up on points leader Lamy-Chappuis who finished down in 15th place. Bryan Fletcher finished in 23rd and Johnny Spillane followed in 37th. Todd Lodwick did not finish and young Michael Ward did not qualify in the top 50.

Period III          
Sat, Jan 26, Klingenthal, Germany -- Bryan Fletcher jumped to 15th place, then raced well and won a four-man sprint to finish sixth. His brother Taylor turned in the second-fastest XC time as he raced up from 34th to finish 17th. Johnny Spillane finished 22nd and Bill Demong followed in 29th. Eric Frenzel won the event and pulled two points ahead of previous World Cup leader Jason Lamy-Chappuis who finished fifth. After posting his first podium finish the previous week in Seefeld, Taylor Fletcher was named FIS Nordic Combined Athlete of the Week. Taylor has turned in the fastest XC time in four World Cup events this season.
Sun, Jan 27, Bryan Fletcher placed 7th in the jumping phase of the day's penalty race, incurring two penalty laps. Bryan raced well and finished eighth. Bill Demong jumped to 24th place and had to complete four penalty laps but he ran hard and finished in 12th. Taylor Fletcher and Johnny Spillane both missed the cut, which was to only the top 25 skiers. Eric Frenzel won again, winning both the jump and the XC, and stretched his lead in the World Cup race.

Mon, Jan 28, the USST announced the Nordic Combined team for the World Championships in Val di Fiemme, Feb 20-28. The big five, Demong, Spillane, Lodwick and two Fletcher brothers, will be joined by young Michael Ward. Read more on the USST web site.

Sochi RUS, Sat, Feb 2, Bryan Fletcher continued his good skiing, jumping to 10th place while his brother Taylor placed 15th. In the cross country race, Taylor soon made up the 18 second difference to Bryan and the two skied together through the middle of the race, moving past several competitors. Taylor finished fifth while Bryan slowed at the end to drift back to 15th. Bill Demong started 44th, more than three minutes back but raced well, moving up to 28th. Johnny Spillane didn't qualify. Bernhard Gruber (AUT) won the event and moved past Magnus Moan (NOR) into third in World Cup standings.
Sun, Feb 3, the event was a 4x5 km team relay and the U.S. boys jumped well, placing eighth but to start the cross country relay only 55 seconds back. Leadoff skier Bryan Fletcher made up a few seconds to overtake the Slovenian racer ahead of him but the Slovenian appears to have ridden in Fletcher's draft for the remainder of the 5 km leg. Bryan tagged his brother Taylor who took off and left his Slovenian competitor behind. The U.S. racers ran alone for the rest of the race while Germany, Austria and France worked together at the front to protect their podium positions from Team Norway who remained within striking distance through the entire 4x5 km race. In the end Germany pulled away for the win and France finished a few seconds in front of Austria with Norway closing fast for fourth.

Almaty (KAZ), Sat, Feb 9, the U.S. boys skipped the events in Almaty (KAZ) in order to prepare for the World Championships Feb 21 to Mar 2 in Val di Fiemme (ITA). Bjorn Kierkeisen won Saturday's Gundersen event over Watabe and Bieler but the standings remained unchanged at the top. Sunday will see another Gundersen race.
Sun, Feb 10, Bieler won over Watabe and Dvorak but the top competitors skipped the weekend's events so the points and rankings didn't change at the top.

World Championships in Val di Fiemme        
Feb 22 -- Defending World Cup champion Jason Lamy-Chappuis of France was joined by Bjoern Kircheisen (GER) and the two roared up from 11th & 12th in the XC race for a four-up sprint with Mario Stecher (AUT) and Eric Frenzel (GER). Chappuis won the sprint, followed by Stecher, Kircheisen and Frenzel who was just half a second from Gold. Bryan Fletcher jumped to 19th place and raced up to 14th. Bill Demong finished 23rd, Taylor Fletcher 25th, and Todd Lodwick 35th.   [ See results.]
Bronze for Team USA -- Feb 24 -- The race of the day was a Team Sprint relay (NH with 4x5 k XC). The U.S. boys jumped well and started the XC race fifth, 62 seconds behind Japan with France, Austria and Norway in between. In the first timing segment of 1.3 km, leadoff man Taylor Fletcher, one of the fastest skiers on the World Cup tour, caught Norwegian Graabak and pulled to under 40 seconds behind Yoshito Watabe. Norway and USA continued to work together and make up time on the leaders. By the first tag at 5 km, Austria had taken the lead with NOR & FRA at 6 seconds and JAP & USA at 10 seconds back. Now it was Bryan Fletcher's turn to do battle, and he fought well as USA, FRA, NOR & JAP formed a group and worked together through the second leg. Bryan tagged off to veteran Todd Lodwick and the same four nations worked together, pulling up to the leading Austrian Lucas Klapfer by the last tag. Now it was a leading group of five with Bill Demong pushing the pace and leading through the next three timing points. At the end Chappuis of France outsprinted Moan of Norway and USA (Demong) held off Japan for the bronze medal. Austria finished fifth, just 7.6 sec behind the winner -- an exciting race.   [ See results.]
Feb 28 -- Eric Frenzel of Germany dominated the field to win the LH NC World Championship in Val di Fiemme. The World Cup points leader won the jump, then started the XC with a 14 second lead and steadily pulled away from the field, achieving a lead of a minute-plus before letting up in the final kilometers and winning by 36 second. Bernhard Gruber came out of the large chase pack to win the sprint for second, followed by Jason Lamy-Chappuis. Bill Demong led the U.S. Team, racing up from 25th to finish 15th and recording the fastest race time. Taylor Fletcher, with the second-fastest time, raced up from 27th to 17th while brother Bryan, not as fast as his team-mates, went from 24th to 23rd. Johnny Spillane jumped to 43rd and finished the race in 30th place, making up just two seconds on the speedy Frenzel.  [ See Results.]

Mar 2 -- Bill Demong and Taylor Fletcher jumped to tenth place on the large hill in Val di Fiemme, and started 1:40 back in the 2x7.5 km cross country relay. Fletcher led off with the fastest XC time of the day, making up half of the deficit, but Bill Demong couldn't match that pace and simply stayed in sixth place to the end. Team France took the gold over Austria and Germany. This was the last NC event in Val di Fiemme.  [ See Results.]
Period IV          
Fri, Mar 8, Lahti, Finland -- Bryan Fletcher jumped to 7th place, then raced well working with a small group and holding the pace of the leaders but not gaining any -- Bryan finished 7th. His brother Taylor jumped to 34th and started the race 2:26 back but he turned in the second-fastest race and moved up ten or more seconds in each of the first six timing intervals and finishing in 19th place. Bill Demong placed 53rd in the provisional jumping and so didn't qualify for the event. Eric Frenzel won the event over three Japanese rivals. The schedule had called for a team relay on Friday and a Gunderson event Saturday but organizers reversed these two. [ See Results.]
Sat, Mar 9 -- Bryan & Taylor Fletcher teamed up for a two man 2 X 7.5 km team sprint relay, jumping to eighth place and holding eighth right through the race. Youngster Adam Loomis teamed with veteran Bill Demong. These two jumped to 21st, then moved up to 19th before being the last of four teams to be lapped. [ See Results.]

Friday, Mar 15 -- Taylor Fletcher jumped 115 meters on the new Holmenkollen big hill, good for 23rd place in the jumping portion of the LH Gundersen sprint event and a start 1:31 behind the jumping leader Yoshito Watabe of Japan. Fletcher then posted the fastest cross country time of the day to move past 18 of his competitors and finish in fifth place. Brother Bryan Fletcher jumped 117.5 meters, good for 16th place start in the XC race. The jumpers were densely packed, making for many working groups, large and small throughout the race. Drafting counts in cross country as it does in bicycle racing and auto racing. Taylor worked his way up through these groups, reaching his brother by the 3 km mark. They worked together in a large group of racers before Taylor pushed the pace so hard that the group broke into three parts. Taylor continued to move up and by the half way point in the 10 km race, he was in a large group chasing the three leaders. The three front runners, Eric Frenzel and two Watabes were also working together as a group of nine strong racers edged ever closer. In the last couple of km the chase group finally broke apart as Fletcher and defending World Cup champion Jason Lamy Chappuis broke away but in the end, the two couldn't get withing 20 seconds of the leader. Frenzel, who had entered the event with an unbeatable lead in the points race for the World Cup, won the event, followed by two Watabes, Chappuis and Fletcher. Bryan finished 11th and Bill Demong posted the third fastest XC time, moving up from 31st to 15th. Todd Lodwick rejoined his teammates for the Holmenkollen finale and finished 37th.
Saturday, Mar 16 -- The final event of the Nordic Combined World Cup season saw the top 30 skiers in the points standings take two jumps on the Holmenkollen ski jump and then contest a 15 km XC race. Defending World Cup champion Jason Lamy Chappuis of France jumped 120.5 & 124.0 meters but started eighth, 1:16 behind the jumping leader Taihei Kato (JAP). In the first few km Kato was joined by runaway World Cup points leader Eric Frenzel (GER), Yoshito Watabe (JAP), and Wilhelm Denifl (AUT) who stormed up from a minute back. These four worked together while behind them Chappuis caught Akito Watabe and those two gained rapidly on the front four, making contact before the halfway point in the race. Farther back, Taylor Fletcher was again putting in the fastest race of the day as he joined strong racers Magnus Moan and Mikko Kokslien of Norway. The three make up a lot of ground but a 3:40 gap was too much and Fletcher finished in 11th place, 1:26 back and just in front of his two Norwegian companions. Defending Holmenkollen champion Bryan Fletcher started 21st and finished 20th. The other U.S. skiers were not in the top 30 and so did not compete.

2012-13 Season at a Glance

The table below shows the entire Nordic Combined World Cup season -- a full schedule of 24 events on 12 weekends -- with the dates and venues of the events. Most individual competitions will run in the same sprint format: one jump, usually on Large Hill (a few Normal Hill events), followed by a 10k race with Gundersen handicap. The schedule includes two Penalty Races and six Team Relays, four for 2-man teams and two for 4-man teams.
Table columns give the venue location and the date of the event, and in the right-hand columns, we will post Bill Demong's finish place, the World Cup points earned for that placing, link "US" to the USST news story and link "FIS" to the official FIS results page. That results page includes, in the upper-right corner, a list of available files including: jump results, World Cup standings, Nations Cup standings, money standings, start lists, etc. The USST article usually describes the weather conditions and how the race went for Bill and the rest of the U.S. World Cup competitors.

 Venue                    Date      place (pts)    Links

Lillehammer (NOR)     24 NOV 2012     43   (0)    US  FIS

Lillehammer (NOR)     25 NOV 2012     DNQ  (0)    US  FIS

Kuusamo (FIN)          1 DEC 2012     DNQ  (0)    US  FIS

Kuusamo (FIN)          2 DEC 2012   2-man relay   US  FIS

Erzurum (TUR)          8 DEC 2012    Events cancelled

Erzurum (TUR)          9 DEC 2012    Events cancelled

Ramsau (AUT)          15 DEC 2012     16  (15)    US  FIS

Ramsau (AUT)          16 DEC 2012     45   (0)    US  FIS

   (Break for Holidays)

Schonach (GER)         5 JAN 2013   NH 4x5k Relay US  FIS

Schonach (GER)         6 JAN 2013     DNQ  (0)    US  FIS

Chaux-Neuve (FRA)     12 JAN 2013     DNQ  (0)    US  FIS

Chaux-Neuve (FRA)     13 JAN 2013   LH Team Relay US  FIS

Seefeld (AUT)         19 JAN 2013     DNS  (0)    US  FIS

Seefeld (AUT)         20 JAN 2013     DNS  (0)    US  FIS

Klingenthal (GER)     26 JAN 2013     29   (2)    US  FIS

Klingenthal (GER)     27 JAN 2013     12  (22)    US  FIS

Sochi  (RUS)           2 FEB 2013     28   (3)    US  FIS

Sochi  (RUS)           3 FEB 2013   LH 4x5k Relay US  FIS

Almaty (KAZ)           9 FEB 2013   USA Skipped   US  FIS

Almaty (KAZ)          10 FEB 2013   USA Skipped   US  FIS

 (Break for World Championships)     

Lahti (FIN)            8 MAR 2013     DNQ  (0)    US  FIS

Lahti (FIN)            9 MAR 2013   LH Team Relay US  FIS

Oslo (NOR)            15 MAR 2013      15 (16)    US  FIS

Oslo (NOR)            16 MAR 2013     DNQ  (0)    US  FIS

See   2011-12 season   or    2013-14 season   or  Billy's Blog.

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