2022 Olympic Nordic combined in review: Wrong turn flips script for Norway’s stars

Posted at 5:15 AM, Feb 20, 2022

Nordic combined at the 2022 Winter Olympics was an unpredictable adventure through air and snow that included one of the most shocking and memorable moments in the sport’s Olympic history.

It also saw the return to power Jorgen Graabak, a two-time gold medalist at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics. Graabak was a non-factor in individual events in 2018, but returned to the podium three times in Beijing, including twice as a gold medalist.

And for the third straight time at the Winter Games, the highly-anticipated 4x5 km team event came down to a duel between rivals Norway and Germany.

For all the Nordic combined action at the 2022 Winter Olympics, scroll down for event summaries, recaps and highlights.

Medal Table — Nordic Combined
Country Medals Total
Norway 🥇 2 | 🥈 2 | 🥉 0 4
Germany 🥇 1 | 🥈 1 | 🥉 0 2
Japan 🥇 0 | 🥈 0 | 🥉 2 2
Austria 🥇 0 | 🥈 0 | 🥉 1 1

Event summaries

Men’s Individual Normal Hill / 10 km

A dramatic last lap pass from Germany’s Vinzenz Geiger kicked off the 2022 Nordic combined program in thrilling fashion. Geiger crossed the line first, securing the gold medal despite an 11th-place finish in the ski jumping phase of the competition. Jorgen Graabak secured his first of a trio of Olympic medals with silver. Conspicuous by his absence was two-time defending world champion Jarl Magnus Riiber of Norway, who had previously tested positive for COVID-19. More on him in a moment.

🥇 Vinzenz Geiger, GER, 25:07.3

🥈 Jorgen Graabak, NOR, 25:08.5

🥉 Lukas Greiderer, AUT, 25:14.3

RECAP: Germany’s Vinzenz Geiger rallies to win normal hill gold


Men’s Individual Large Hill / 10 km

One day out of quarantine and without his rivals’ knowledge of the competition course, Riiber made the most memorable mishap of not only the Nordic combined competition, but of the entire Beijing Games. Riiber, who was leading by a hefty margin at the time, took a wrong turn on his first stadium loop and had to retrace his steps for more than 50 meters. The mistake cost him 44 seconds and plenty of effort. He ended up finishing off the podium, 39 seconds behind Graabak, who won gold. In doing so, Graabak became the first man to win two gold medals in the event in Olympic history.

🥇 Jorgen Graabak, NOR, 27:13.3

🥈 Jens Luraas Oftebro, NOR, 25:08.5

🥉 Akito Watabe, JPN, 27:13.9

RECAP: Joergen Graabak becomes first two-time large hill/10km gold medalist in Olympic history


Team Large Hill / 4x5 km

The Norwegian team won gold in the large hill/4x5km team event in the last Nordic combined competition at the 2022 Winter Olympics. The quartet of Espen BjoernstadEspen AndersenJens Luraas Oftebro and Joergen Graabak finished with a time of 50:45.1.

Norway’s Anderson performed a final jump that had the Norwegians starting second, eight seconds behind the Austrians for the cross-country skiing phase. Anderson had better technique than Austria’s Franz-Josef Rehrl, but was eight meters shy. He jumped to 133.5m to earn 119.7 points. The Norwegians came away from the large hill with a total of 469.4 points.

🥇 Norway, 50:45.1

🥈 Germany, 51:40.0

🥉 Japan, 51:40.3