May 29, 2023

German canoeists famos on first final day – “insane”

german canoeists famos on first final day - 'insane'

Under the eyes of ice princess katarina witt, the german canoeists had a great first final day at the world championships at home.

In the olympic disciplines alone, the paddlers, accustomed to success, won three gold medals and two silver medals on the regatta course in duisburg. "It’s simply amazing how our athletes keep making it happen," enthused sports director jens kahl, who has already proclaimed the world title bouts in the lower rhine region the "first milestone" on the way to the 2016 olympics in rio.

Max hoff in the single kayak and the duos max rendschmidt/marcus grob and franziska weber/tina dietze each in the double kayak secured the first three world championship titles for the team of national coach reiner kiebler. The quad canoe with C2 olympic winners kurt kuschela and peter kretschmer in the boat also paddled to gold. In addition, it hailed a total of four times silver. "I am a little speechless," confessed national coach reiner kiebler. "It’s great that everything worked out this way."

The german canoeing federation (DKV) had issued six plaques as target marks from its athletes within the olympic disciplines alone, three of which were gold. Already after the first final day, the almost can be raked off. "What the federation asked of us in terms of medals, we have already almost fulfilled," recognized olympic champion sebastian brendel, who won silver in the canadier-one.

On sunday there will be a total of 19 more decisions at the world championships, "we will certainly win something in the olympic disciplines," said kahl. The women’s kayak four with weber and dietze alone is considered a sure medal boat. Besides brendel, katrin wagner-augustin also took second place in the kayak-one on saturday. Over the non-olympic 1000-meter distance, verena hantl in the K1 and carolin leonhardt/conny wabmuth in the K2 secured two more silver medals for kiebler’s team.

For max hoff, perhaps the most surprising german gold medal winner, it was also a redemption after the painful home world championships six years ago, also in duisburg. Ten of the 31 german canoeists in the current squad had already competed in 2007. And they all won at least one medal in front of their home crowd – all except max hoff. "It’s amazing that it even worked out with gold now. It’s unbelievable to be pushed so much by the fans in front of your home crowd," commented the man from essen.

But one weak point of the german canoe federation remains the sprint sector. Over 200 meters, only three of seven boats made it to the finals, which are scheduled for sunday. German paddlers missed the finals in three of four olympic disciplines. In the kayak-one anne knorr and tom liebscher said goodbye, in the canadier-one stefan kiraj had no chance against the international competition already in the preliminary round. Only ronald rauhe and jonas ems in the K2 kept their medal chances alive.

"This is the first time we’ve had to make a change," association president thomas konietzko had to admit. "We have to analyze what might have gone wrong during the preparation phase."The meager result in the olympic 200-meter races is also surprising because things seemed to be going well after a poor olympic record: under the supervision of the new sprint coach arndt hanisch, the duo rauhe/ems had paddled to second place at the european championships in portugal in june, and liebscher had also finished third in one of them. The results in the world cups were also encouraging", konietzko emphasized, "that’s why our expectations for the home world championships were naturally different"."


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