In the fast 10,000-metre race of the European Championships, held in Prague two weeks later, he broke 28 minutes for the first time while finishing second in 27 minutes 31.48 seconds, just four one-hundredths of a second ahead of Alexander Antipov of the Soviet Union, and half a second behind Finland's Martti Vainio (see, for example, Tapio Pekola et al., eds., EM-Praha 1978 (European Championships in Prague 1978), Kaarina, Finland: Juoksija-lehti (Runner Magazine), 1978). In the slow and tactical 5,000-metre final, he managed to squeeze through the narrow space between Ryffel and Soviet Union's Alexander Fedotkin to sprint to the lead and win by 0.1 seconds. He missed the 1980 Moscow Olympics due to injury. His last major international track race was the 1981 IAAF World Cup event in Rome, where he placed fourth in 10,000. Plague by physical problems, Ortis retired in 1983.