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1ST LEAD Germany name 153-strong team for Olympics By Andreas Schirmer, dpa

Europe, Europa
23.01.2018
By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Frankfurt (dpa) - Germany on Tuesday named a 153-strong team for next month‘s Olympics in Pyeongchang, including the likes of seven-time biathlon world champion Laura Dahlmeier and speed skater Claudia Pechstein, the nation‘s most successful Winter Games athlete.

The team number for the February 9-25 Games in South Korea exactly matches that from four years ago in Sochi, Russia, when the German team garnered 19 medals, including eight gold.

"The Sochi result is our yardstick," German Olympic Sports Association (DOSB) sports chief Dirk Schimmelpfennig said.

"We are travelling to Pyeongchang with a good feeling," he added, hoping that Germany can eclipse the Sochi result and move towards the 30-medal haul again from Vancounver 2010.

"We have a chance for success in almost all of the 14 sports," Schimmelpfenning said. "I wouldn‘t be surprised if we can get the first medal quickly."

The DOSB had last week nominated 43 athletes and completed the team with the official nominations of a further 110. The first group will depart for South Korea on January 31, and most of the others on February 5.

Seven of the Sochi gold medallists are still around, including the winners of all four luge events, Nordic combined skier Eric Frenzel and ski-jumpers Carina Vogt and Andreas Wellinger.

Pechstein, 45, meanwhile could add to her 5-2-2 haul at what will be her seventh Games, and is also considered as German flag bearer at the opening ceremony - despite a two-year doping-rules related ban.

Dahlmeier is a big medal hope after taking five golds and a silver at last year‘s world championships, and alpine skier Thomas Dressen is also considered a contender after his stunning victory on the weekend in the Kitzbuehel World Cup downhill.

The team will have prominent support as German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier is set to attend the opening ceremony. Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere, whose portfolio includes sports, is also to visit the Games.

 

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