The Four Hills Tournament first took place in 1953. Since then, it has become a monument of the sport of ski jumping.
USA Nordic’s own, Kevin Bickner, is ready for the highly anticipated event which begins tomorrow. “It’s a lot of competitions packed into a short amount of time so it’s a really cool nine days,” says Bickner. With 8 events, in 9 days, on 4 different hills- the event tests even the most consistent of jumpers.
Many qualities separate Four Hills from the rest. One such quality, all the scores are added up from each event. The jumper with the most points after all four events is crowned the champion- a title which has only been held by the greats. Anyone who strives to leave a legacy in the sport of ski jumping knows, it cannot happen without a Four Hills victory.
“Another difficult part about the Four Hills is the differences in each hill. There’s no time to adjust to a different style of hill, you just have to be jumping well,” says Bickner. The event rewards consistency. One mistake is all it takes to fall out of contention.
In most competitions, the top 30 jumpers after the first round proceed to the second round. In the Four Hills Tourney, the athletes are seeded based on the qualification, then put against each other in head to head matchups. The winner of each matchup advances to the second round with the addition of five lucky losers. “The format is difficult because qualification results matter,” says Bickner. This head to head format is unique to the Four Hills and brings tons of excitement.
How to Watch:
Purchase the NBC Sports Gold: Snow Pass and tune in to all your favorite winter sports, all season long! Cheer on Kevin Bickner as he strives to build on an already hot start to the season. Watch all the action unfold as a new Four Hills Champion will be crowned, etching their name into the history books.
Four Hills Tournament Dates:
December 29th: Qualification
December 30th: Competition #1
Garmisch Partenkirchen, Germany:
December 31st: Qualification
January 1st: Competition #2
January 3rd: Qualification
January 4th: Competition #3
January 5th: Qualification
January 6th: Competition #4