World champion ski jumper Alexandria Loutitt fell well short of a victory on Saturday but still managed to become the first Canadian to climb onto the overall podium in the Grand Prix Summer Series.
The 19-year-old Calgarian, who won bronze in four of the previous six Grand Prix events, sat in first place after posting the longest jump of the day at 139.9 metres in the opening round, but dropped to 25th after falling in her final attempt.
“That’s not the way I wanted to end the summer season, but at least there is something positive today (finishing third overall),” Loutitt said on her Instagram account.
Slovenia’s Ema Klinec won the final Grand Prix event of the season, finishing ahead of compatriot Nika Kriznar, who claimed the overall title despite missing the top step of the podium for the first time all season.
Japan’s Sara Takanashi edged out Loutitt for second in the overall standings. Fellow Calgarian Abigail Strate finished sixth overall.
“Overall, for me, the summer is preparation for the winter season which I am looking forward to,” said Strate, who was not able to jump on her second attempt after being flagged for being late and finished 28th.
Summer ski jumping is performed on an in-run where the tracks are made from porcelain and the grass on the slope is covered with water-soaked plastic.
Loutitt became Canada’s first ski jumping world champion when she took gold in the women’s large hill event March 1 in Slovenia.
Loutitt, Strate, MacKenzie Boyd-Clowes and Matthew Soukup combined for an Olympic bronze medal in the inaugural mixed team event last year in Beijing.
The Canadian Press