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Yanqing (China) (AFP) – Germany have dominated sliding sports activities on the Beijing Olympics on high-speed sleds utilizing supplies “mainly much like Components One”, says one of many males who builds them.
Going into the ultimate weekend of the Video games, the Germans have gained 12 of the 24 medals at Yanqing Nationwide Sliding Centre, together with seven of the eight golds.
Along with the experience and willpower of their athletes, Germany’s success is right down to know-how from about 7,000 kilometres (4,00 miles) away in Berlin.
The Institute for Analysis and Improvement of Sports activities Tools (FES) within the German capital builds and assessments the bobsleigh, luge and skeleton sleds.
The supplies for them wouldn’t be misplaced on a Components One racing automotive, says engineer Konstantin Schulze, who oversees their development.
Underlining the comparability, in Friday’s coaching for the four-man bobsleigh, Germany’s Johannes Lochner was quickest, clocking speeds of as much as 136 kilometres per hour.
Germany’s high bobsleigh pilot Francesco Friedrich charges FES as “enormously necessary” as he appears to win a second gold in Beijing in Sunday’s four-man bobsleigh.
Like the opposite German pilots, Friedrich works carefully with FES specialists every time he races.
“It’s important to think about it like a sports activities automotive that the athlete must ship the right efficiency,” says Schulze.
German sleds are wanted and Friedrich offered a bobsleigh he now not wanted to Canadian rival Christopher Spring earlier than the Winter Video games.
“He (Friedrich) positively would not have offered it if he did not have one thing higher, proper?” mentioned Canadian pilot Justin Kripps final week.
FES engineers tinker with the sleds on the ice at certainly one of Germany’s 4 tracks or within the wind tunnel at their Berlin headquarters.
“We attempt to lower two tenths (of a second) from every run throughout an Olympic cycle,” mentioned FES director Michael Nitsch.
In a sport typically determined by effective margins, that might make the distinction between successful an Olympic medal or not.
Such know-how doesn’t come low cost.
The German authorities gives annual funding of seven million euros ($8 million) to FES, which has 80 workers.
Their know-how advantages German athletes in different Olympic sports activities comparable to pace skating, canoeing and biking.
Germany’s success on the Yanqing ice monitor is born out of bitter defeat.
On the 2014 Sochi Video games, Germany didn’t win a bobsleigh medal for the primary time in 50 years.
Consequently, the German federation turned to FES and Austrian producer Wallner.
The 2-pronged strategy noticed Germany win all three bobsleigh medals on the 2018 Pyeongchang Video games. Friedrich gained two- and four-man golds whereas Mariama Jamanka took the two-woman title — all in FES sleds.
Nitsch dismisses ideas that FES offers German racers an unfair benefit.
Different nationwide groups are “additionally allowed to do what we do”, says the FES boss.
© 2022 AFP