Kazuyoshi Funaki

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Kazuyoshi Funaki
Personal information
Full name Kazuyoshi Funaki
Born (1975-04-27) 27 April 1975 (age 38)
Yoichi, Hokkaido, Japan
Height 1,75 m
Professional information
Club Fit Ski
World Cup
Seasons 1993, 1995-05, 2009-
Wins 15
Additional podiums 23
Total podiums 38
Updated on October 7, 2011.

Kazuyoshi Funaki (船木 和喜 Funaki Kazuyoshi?), born April 27, 1975 in Yoichi, Hokkaido) is a Japanese ski jumper.

He ranked among the most successful sportsmen of its discipline, particularly in the 1990s. Funaki is known for his special variant of the V-style technique, in which the body lies flat.

Career

Funaki began ski jumping at the age of eleven. His birthplace Yoichi is also the home of Yukio Kasaya, who was a Japanese national hero with his Normal Hill victory in the 1972 Winter Olympics at Sapporo. Kasaya was also Funaki's role model.

Funaki had his first World Cup appearance on December 20, 1992 in Sapporo. His first World Cup victory was achieved on December 10, 1994 in the normal hill at Planica, Slovenia. Several weeks later, he was leading the Four Hills Tournament in total tour points after the third event. In the second part of the last event at Bischofshofen, he had the longest jump of 131.5 meters, but fell during the landing - and the overall tour victory went to Austrian Andreas Goldberger, and Funaki finished second.

Altogether Funaki won 15 World Cup career victories, his last on February 5, 2005 at Sapporo. He achieved his best results in the 1997/98 season with a second rank in the World Cup rankings. In that season he also won the Four Hills Tournament.

In 1997, Funaki won the ski jumping event at the Holmenkollen ski festival. He also won the FIS Ski-Flying World Championships 1998 in Oberstdorf.

The high point of his career was in the 1998 Winter Olympic Games at Nagano. In front of his local crowd, Funaki won the individual gold medal on the individual large Hill, the team large hill gold medal, and the individual normal hill silver medal behind the Finn Jani Soininen. During those games, he became only the second person to ever achieve perfect marks from all five judges (20 points is the highest attainable mark), following Toni Innauer who had achieved this masterpiece already in 1976 and preceding Sven Hannawald (2003), Hideharu Miyahira (2003) and Wolfgang Loitzl (2009). In honor of these achievements, he represented Asia in carrying the Olympic Flag during the opening ceremonies of the next Winter Olympics, in Salt Lake City.

At the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships, he became the world champion of the individual normal hill in 1999 at Ramsau, Austria. And together with the Japanese team, he placed 2nd in the Team large hill in 1997, 1999 and 2003.

For his ski jumping successes, Funaki received the Holmenkollen medal in 1999.

In recent times, Funaki is only moderately successful despite some opportunities for successes. In the 2004/05 season, he finished 13th in the World Cup standing.

Funaki lives today in Slovenia and does not train any more with the Japanese team. Unlike all other Japanese ski jumpers, he does not belong to any team, and is an independent entrepreneur.

World Cup

Victories

Season Date Location
1994-95 December 10, 1994 Slovenia Planica
January 4, 1995 Austria Innsbruck
1996-97 December 14, 1996 Czechoslovakia Harrachov
January 4, 1997 Austria Innsbruck
March 12, 1997 Finland Kuopio
March 14, 1997 Norway Oslo
1997-98 December 29, 1997 Germany Oberstdorf
January 1, 1998 Germany Ga-Pa
January 4, 1998 Austria Innsbruck
January 25, 1998 Germany Oberstdorf (SF)
March 21, 1998 Slovenia Planica
1998-99 January 10, 1999 Switzerland Engelberg
January 24, 1999 Japan Sapporo
March 6, 1999 Finland Lahti
2004-05 February 5, 2005 Japan Sapporo

References








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