The German men’s relay clearly missed the longed-for medal after an unbelievable breakdown by starting runner Erik Lesser. Lesser, Roman Rees, Arnd Peiffer and Benedikt Doll had to be satisfied with the disappointing seventh place at the World Cup in Pokljuka. It was the second worst World Cup result for a DSV quartet since reunification after being twelfth in 2001.
Norway became world champion over the 4×7.5km. The team around Johannes Thingnes Bö (0 + 8) clearly triumphed with 33.1 seconds ahead of Olympic champions Sweden (0 + 7) and Russia (0 + 5 / + 50.9). Peiffer and Co. (0 + 4) were 1: 43.2 minutes behind.
Already after the starter Lesser, the medal dreams of the DSV athletes, who had twice stood on the podium in this season in the World Cup, were over. The 32-year-old managed three spare rounds, but above all could not keep up on the track. Lesser handed over as 20th, 1:23 minutes behind Rees.
The last round nothing went. I don’t have a real explanation,” said DSV doctor Jan Wüstenfeld to ZDF. After crossing the finish line, Lesser collapsed and supervisors had to help him up. But things are going better so far, says Wüstenfeld. Rees said he had “never experienced a collapse of this magnitude.” Lesser already “didn’t look good when he came in. I’m sorry for Erik,” said Peiffer.
The last world title came in 2015 in Kontiolahti.
The World Cup will be concluded on Sunday with the mass start races for women over 12.5 km (12.30 p.m.) and men over 15 km (3:15 p.m. / ZDF and Eurosport). So far, the DSV team has won silver twice. After Peiffer, the women’s relay was also successful on Saturday.
Preuss leads German biathletes to World Cup silver
Franziska Preuß threw her arms up after her phenomenal final sprint, then her teammates welcomed her at the finish with loud cheers. Thanks to an outstanding performance, last runner Preuss secured the longed-for first medal for the German biathletes at the World Championships in Pokljuka on Saturday with silver. With a final show of strength on the home straight, Preuss caught the Ukrainian Olena Pidruschna by 0.4 seconds – and was then able to celebrate the all-important liberation with Vanessa Hinz, Janina Hettich and Denise Herrmann.
“I noticed, that’s enough” s. It was really a really nice feeling. That is extremely good for everyone, the whole team, “said Preuss. She prevented the first medalless World Cup for the German women since 1987. As in the previous year, gold went to Norway. Before that, only Arnd Peiffer had a medal for the German team with silver fetched.
“You saw again during the week that competitive sport is really tough. Now it’s mega-cool that we caught the day today and have something to celebrate,” said Preuss, who laid the foundation for the sense of achievement with two quick and error-free shooting bouts had placed on ZDF. In the previous individual races, Preuss and Co. had narrowly missed a medal.
The y were close, but never good enough – until now.
In the meantime, it looked like the next World Cup disappointment. After a strong start by Hinz (28), who was the only one of the current team to take part in the last World Cup victory in 2017 in Hochfilzen, the deficit of the not so strong Hettich in their first World Championship season grew to one minute. “I’m so happy that I have such a cool team around me, the others were really amazing,” said Hettich, who handed over to Herrmann in sixth place, relieved.
Herrmann (32) started the race to catch up, lying down with three spare rounds just avoiding the penalty loop, but then shooting zero standing up and sending Preuss into the final in fifth with a 43-second mortgage. “We know that a lot can happen in a relay race. I said before that we always fight to the end and we really had to fight to the end, and that paid off,” said the strong Hinz, who was looking forward to it. how Preuss went hunting for the top.
And the girlfriend of Simon Schempp, who resigned shortly before the World Cup, showed why she is the most consistent German this winter. After the last shooting, she went into the final lap second. After Pidruschna passed her, it initially looked like bronze. But the Bavarian struck back. “It was awesome,” said discipline trainer Florian Steirer. − sid/dpa
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Lesser collapses Drama German mens relay women cheer silver