Demong lands in second place at Summer Grand Prix

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Bill Demong of Vermontville, N.Y., who lived and trained for years in Steamboat Springs, came back from seventh in the jumping round to finish second overall in the first of three FIS Grand Prix Nordic combined summer competitions in rainy Hinterzarten, Germany on Saturday.

The summer competition has athletes going head-to-head in dryland jumps and racing the cross-country portion of the event on inline skates.

"Bill finished second today after it started pouring rain 30 minutes before the start of the race. It was a good course when it was dry but in the rain, it brought everyone together," Nordic combined head coach Dave Jarrett said. "Bill did a great job managing the race, and it ended with a sprint finish for the podium."

Demong, who started 54 seconds back, finished only 1.3 seconds behind Germany's Georg Hettich, who took first. Rounding out the podium was Austria's David Kreiner.

The U.S. Nordic combined team's Johnny Spillane and Alex Glueck, both of Steamboat Springs, also were in Germany to compete in the summer Grand Prix. Spillane finished 30th and Glueck was 36th.

Demong spent several years living and training in Steamboat Springs before moving to Park City, Utah, to be closer to the U.S. Ski Team and the Nordic combined team's home base.

"Johnny jumped OK, but had the wheels for dry pavement and couldn't push at all. Alex Glueck also jumped OK but had the same problem with the wheels," Jarrett said. "Overall, we are here to see the level of jumping and after the last few days, we know where we are in relation to the rest of the Nordic combined world."

The FIS Grand Prix continues today in Oberstdorf, Germany and wraps up in Einsiedeln, Switzerland on Wednesday.

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