ISO / Leipzig. After a preliminary round including the German record on Tuesday, the German 4th-track bike started with Felix Gross (SC DHfK) of Leipzig for the last time on Wednesday at the Izu Velodrome. However, the team with the new squad could not prevail against the Canadians. After the Danes fell in the semi-final against Great Britain, Denmark went on to reach the final, but the British finished only seventh against Switzerland. For Germany, all the medals were already off the table, but the four-man team managed to reach fifth place in the team quest with a win over Canada.
Shortly after the start around 5:50pm local time, Germany’s Felix Gross team was a few tenths behind, and the Canadians slowly but surely increased their lead over the course of the race. In the end, the German drivers crossed the finish line in a time of 3:50.023 – three seconds ahead of the Canadians – and ended up in sixth place. The four drivers did not cut short the German record of 3:48,886, which was set only on Tuesday.
“We went in with the same tactics as on Tuesday, replacing Roger (Kluge) with Theo (Reinhardt) because he was a little tired,” Felix Gross told rad-net.de after the race. “We traveled in this constellation for the first time, so we are very satisfied with the time, with the run. We can build on that.” In the duel of Oceania for the bronze medal, Australia defeated its neighbors New Zealand, but the reason was again an ugly fall: the fourth rider touched the wheel The person in front of him lost his balance and fell on the track.
The final was an impressive race between the two strongest teams from the start: Denmark took the lead midway through the race, but Italy faltered in the final meters and finally came in with a time of 3:42.032 nearly a tenth of a second ahead of the Danes at the finish line – a new world record.
“Unfortunately, we are currently not strong enough to keep up with the best in the world,” says Steffen Matthes, SC DHfK’s sporting director. Together with the staff of the Leipzig Olympic base, he continued the final races on Wednesday morning in the audience with breakfast and coffee. Despite the losing race, Matisse is completely satisfied with his pupil Felix Gross: “The national coaches have to judge the performance of the quadruple in general, but Felix was really at his best and in a really good sporting mood – also thanks to the preparations by his coach Dietmar Juncker.” In order to keep up with the big teams, Mattis believes, you also need the top drivers – at least three, at least four. “I don’t mean to say that Felix is the only good driver on the team. But even if Theo Reinhart had driven instead of Jens Kluge today, it would be hard to beat the Canadians. Even if all four went in hopes of a medal, they could certainly be satisfied with the new German record.”
Leipzig’s final medal credit can be replenished again this weekend by Tina Dietze and Melanie Gebhardt in a kayak quad. “Every athlete who makes it to the Olympics is a champion for our club and an example for our youth. I hope they all achieve their personal goals,” says Matisse. If the 4x100m relay around Marvin Schulte (SC DHfK) reaches the final, the sporting scene in Leipzig will meet again after Friday afternoon to watch.
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