Primož Peterka

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Primož Peterka
Primož Peterka 2004 (2).jpg
Peterka in 2004
Country  Slovenia
Born (1979-02-28) 28 February 1979 (age 37)
Ljubljana, SR Slovenia,
Yugoslavia
Height 1.82 m (6 ft 0 in)
Personal best 212 m (696 ft)
Planica, 18 Mar 2000
World Cup career
Seasons 19962009
Individual wins 15
Indiv. podiums 32
Team podiums 2
Yellow bibs 22
Indiv. starts 230
Team starts 21
Overall titles 2 (1997, 1998)
Four Hills titles 1 (1997)
Ski Flying titles 1 (1997)
NH/LH titles 1 (1998)
Updated on 10 February 2016.

Primož Peterka (Slovene pronunciation: [ˈpriːmɔʃ ˈpeːtərka]; born 28 February 1979) is a Slovenian former ski jumper. During his career he won fifteen World Cup events, two consecutive World Cup titles; a ski flying World Cup title; and a Four Hills Tournament. He is held in regard as one of Slovenia's most successful sportsmen. Peterka currently works as an assistant coach in the Slovenian women's ski jumping team.[1]

Career[edit]

Peterka was born in Prikrnica, near Ljubljana, Slovenia (then part of Yugoslavia). He started ski jumping on a small hill (with a K-point at around 20 metres) near his hometown of Moravče, a small town about 30 km north-east from Ljubljana. He later joined the Triglav ski club in Kranj.

1995–96[edit]

Peterka made his World Cup debut on 4 January 1996. Due to the poor performance of Slovenian jumpers at the time, Peterka was brought in as a replacement for the Four Hills Tournament event in Innsbruck, where he finished eighth. This was considered a superb result, thereby making him the leading jumper for Slovenia. Peterka continued his good form, winning the events in Zakopane and Falun, and finishing the season ninth overall. He also finished second behind Michael Uhrmann at the 1996 Junior World Championships.

1996–97[edit]

Peterka at Garmisch-Partenkirchen in 1997

The 1996/97 season was a great success for Peterka. He won seven individual World Cup events, and the Four Hills Tournament. Peterka dominated the overall World Cup standings as only one competitor (Dieter Thoma) finished within 200 points. Peterka finished on top the ski flying standings. On 9 February 1997, Peterka became the first Slovenian to record a jump over 200 metres, landing a 203 m jump at Kulm.

1997–98[edit]

Peterka at Holmenkollen in 1998

The 1997/98 season was also successful. Peterka won four individual events and a second consecutive World Cup title, defeating Kazuyoshi Funaki in the final event of the season. At the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Peterka claimed fifth place in the individual large hill event and sixth in the individual normal hill event.

Later career[edit]

Peterka underwent a personality crisis after his success, with significant drop in results. During this time, details of his personal life were discussed in public, mostly his clashes with officials and his relationship with Renata Bohinc, a Slovenian beauty queen who won in 1996.

A turning point in Peterka's life and career came in 2001 when his son was born. In the 2001–02 World Cup season, Peterka returned to the ski jumping elite. At the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, he won the bronze team medal, together with Peter Žonta, Damjan Fras, and Robert Kranjec. The 2002–03 season was also successful, with Peterka winning two individual events (Kuusamo and Garmisch-Partenkirchen) and finishing the season seventh overall.

From 2004 onwards, Peterka never again managed to finish in the top 10 in an individual World Cup event. However, at the 2005 World Championships in Oberstdorf he won another bronze team medal for Slovenia, together with Jure Bogataj, Rok Benkovič and Jernej Damjan. This made Peterka the first Slovenian ski jumper to win medals both at the Olympics and at the World Championships. After the 2010-2011 season, Peterka officially retired from competitive ski jumping.[2]

World Cup[edit]

Standings[edit]

Season Overall SF JP 4H NT
1995/96 10 9 38 N/A
1996/97 1st 1st 2nd 1st 6
1997/98 1st 3rd 1st 22 10
1998/99 27 20 31 28 41
1999/00 67 66 51
2000/01 N/A
2001/02 25 N/A N/A 13 13
2002/03 7 N/A N/A 5 21
2003/04 45 N/A N/A 28 33
2004/05 34 N/A N/A 38 24
2005/06 32 N/A N/A 21 33
2006/07 81 N/A N/A
2007/08 40 N/A N/A 71 39
2008/09 47 20 N/A 45

Wins[edit]

No. Season Date Place Hill Size
1 1995/96 27 January 1996 Poland Zakopane Wielka Krokiew K116 LH
2 13 March 1996 Sweden Falun Lugnet K90 NH
3 1996/97 8 December 1996 Finland Kuusamo Rukatunturi K120 LH
4 15 December 1996 Czech Republic Harrachov Čerťák K120 LH
5 1 January 1997 Germany Garmisch-Partenkirchen Große Olympiaschanze K115 LH
6 11 January 1997 Switzerland Engelberg Gross-Titlis-Schanze K120 LH
7 12 January 1997 Switzerland Engelberg Gross-Titlis-Schanze K120 LH
8 9 February 1997 Austria Tauplitz/Bad Mitterndorf Kulm K185 FH
9 13 March 1997 Sweden Falun Lugnet K115 (night) LH
10 1997/98 18 January 1998 Poland Zakopane Wielka Krokiew K116 LH
11 8 March 1998 Finland Lahti Salpausselkä K116 LH
12 11 March 1998 Sweden Falun Lugnet K115 (night) LH
13 15 March 1998 Norway Oslo Holmenkollbakken K112 LH
14 2002/03 29 November 2002 Finland Kuusamo Rukatunturi K120 LH
15 1 January 2003 Germany Garmisch-Partenkirchen Große Olympiaschanze K115 LH

Film[edit]

Two sports documentary films were made about his life and career. The first was called Vleci, Primož ("Fly, Primož") and was directed by Beno Hvala in 1997, detailing the story of Peterka's early career. The second, Peterka: leto odločitve ("Peterka: Year of Decision"), was directed by Vlado Škafar in 2002 and focuses on the personality crisis of a young champion who struggles to find his way back to the top.

References[edit]

Olympic Games
Preceded by
Jure Košir
Flagbearer for  Slovenia
Nagano 1998
Succeeded by
Dejan Košir