It wasn’t enough for Max Hoff and Jakob Schopf to win the gold, but the two world champions in men’s kayak were also delighted with the Olympic silver. Soon after crossing the finish line, they hugged, and were on a boat with winners Jan van der Westhosen and Thomas Green of Australia. The two athletes from Essen and Potsdam missed 0.304sec on Thursday over the 1,000m on the Sea Forest waterway after a real thrill with the boat. Third place went to Czechs Josef Dostal and Radek Slov.
“This was important, the boat was one of our medal banks. But it is also clear that Oceania countries such as Australia and New Zealand have prepared excellently,” said Canoeing Director Jens Kahl. Following the bronze medal by Sebastian Brendel/Tim Hecker in the two-man canoe, it was the second medal of the German Canoe Association at the Summer Games in Tokyo.
Again, the 16-year age difference wasn’t an issue. The two-generation boat got along with 38-year-old Max Hoff and 22-year-old Jacob Schöpf wonderfully. Eight-time world canoe champion Hoff, who was 1.98 meters in front as a batter, nearly obscured the smaller fork by 12 centimeters like a helmsman, declared “something tight and open” and asserted: “We know what we’re dreaming of, but we can do more.” A little more.” In the semi-finals they dominated the field and safely headed to the final. Also because they can count on their terminal mutations.
After losing the medal, Schopf was aggressive as he finished fourth in one and promised: “There is still enough grain for two.” Especially since the 2019 World Championship duo reached the semi-finals directly. “Actually you have to eat 5,000 calories every 1,000 meters here,” Schopf said. “It’s a huge energy job here.”
He handled the personal defeat in one (“You screwed it up”) well. “After that I called my parents and friends and got good support,” he said. “I noticed then that there is more than just winning a medal.”
Schopf is a new generation driver for the German team. Phrases such as “Perfection speaks to each of us” attest to a professional approach. He was only sad that his family couldn’t immediately cheer: “My family and my close friend, including my old coach, could have come. When they heard that no spectators were allowed to attend, it was a huge blow to them and me too.”
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