November 26, 2020 5:11 pm
Biathlon At Kontiolahti, up to 4,500 fans are accepted every day to the World Cup. Festive days at Ruhpolding are canceled, but Oberhof will host ski hunters twice in January.
With the individual competitions in Kunteulahti, Finland, athletes begin the World Cup season on Saturday (11 am for men, 2.20 pm women / ZDF and Eurosport). Conditions are difficult due to the Coronavirus – the insurmountable things cannot be ruled out.
What is the scheme for this season?
The International Biathlon Union (IBU) has developed a very strict concept of hygiene. It provides a World Cup bubble where only athletes, coaches, technicians and partners have experienced passive motion. In addition, the FIFA reduced the number of team trips to double the World Cup Finals. Initially, the entourage will stay in Finland for two weeks before planning a weekend in the Tyrolean village of Hochfilzen. Ruhpolding is affected by changes in the calendar. January biathlon days in Chiemgau have been canceled, but Oberhof, the 2023 World Cup host, will have two events. “It could have been worse,” says Olympic champion Arend Beaver. “Even if I were sorry for Robolding, the site for the World Cup in Germany was taken from us, but we still have one.” The Olympic test in Beijing has been canceled, but the ski hunters have been in Novi Mesto for two weeks – thus exclusively in Europe. At the end of January, it will again be assessed whether more changes are needed.
What does the corona factor mean for the masses?
Oddly enough, up to 4,500 spectators a day from the competition are allowed initially in Finland – although the facility near Jönsuu in the east of the country does not attract crowds. Although Russian fans in particular have taken advantage of the short trip to Kontiolahti in recent years, it is very difficult for them to carry it out in times of the pandemic. According to the Austrian APA Agency, it is said that only 1000 tickets were sold for Saturday and about 800 tickets for the races on Sunday. Fans of the World Cup finals are not permitted in Hochfilzen, Oberhof and Antholz. How it will be dealt with in the World Cup on the Slovenian plateau Bukljuca will be decided at the beginning of December. Apart from that, TV channels ARD, ZDF and Eurosport will report on the races live as usual.
What is new in the German camp?
With Engelbert Sklorz, the German Skating Association acquired specialist experience as a shooting instructor. Given the average successful performance last season, that’s more of a good late-night decision as well. The 54-year-old, who himself was an athlete and coach at the Sports School of the Federal Police in Bad Endorf until 1990 convinced German champions of his meticulous work at a rapid pace and set important motives. “It has gone well for me, and I hope to score more goals this season. The challenge now is to implement it in the pressure of competition,” says vice-world champion Dennis Hermann. Women’s coach Christian Mehringer commends: “With him we have filled the position very well.”
How do the Germans compete?
Arnd Peiffer, Benedikt Doll, Johannes Kühn and Philipp Horn are appointed in advance. Then there is Lucas Fratzscher, who as the overall winner of the FIFA World Intellectual Property Cup, has the rights to start privately, Roman Reese and Eric Lesser. The 32-year-old defeated Simon Chimp in Muonio’s indoor playoffs. “Eric has the distinction of being when it comes to sausages,” says national team coach Mark Kirchner. In addition to Hermann, deputy world champion Vanessa Haines, Janina Hettich, Anna Vidal and Franziska Prius, Marin Hammerschmidt is back for the women. “She bonds with others about running and has proven herself in shooting,” says Christian Mehringer. Sophia Schneider is there as an intern. The 23-year-old still lacks stability on the shooting range, but a novice player is allowed to advance to the first division without pressure. “I think it’s really cool to have the opportunity. I’ve been working on it since I started biathlon as a kid.” The woman from Traunstein, who was sick in the fall but refilled her energy stores in the meantime, says, “The dream will come true.”
What is wrong with Simon Schempp?
The world champion in the collective start of the 2017 year has passed the summer well after their early World Cup elimination in January. However, the 32-year-old trained less intensely in order to keep his body balanced. He’s been on strike again and again in previous years and has shown Swabian the limits of his resilience – even after injuries. By failing to qualify for the World Cup, Skimp missed his first goal and dealt with another setback. At the moment, he cannot recommend himself about the second division, the International Airports Federation Cup, as there are no races planned there in 2020 due to Corona. The only possibility: be patient and hope for a chance to work.
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