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Preview: BMW IBSF World Cup 2021/2022 with second Altenberg event; Photo: IBSF / Viesturs Lacis

Qualification period for the 2022 Winter Olympic Games ends in one month 

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Altenberg (RWH): The BMW IBSF World Cup enters the second half of its season in Altenberg (GER). There is one month to go until the deadline for qualifying for the 2022 Winter Olympic Games in Beijing (4 to – 21 February 2022).

The fifth BMW IBSF World Cup 2021/2022 event is the second time that the tour will arrive in Altenberg this season. The 1,413-metre-long track in the Saxon Ore Mountains already hosted the athletes in early December after Altenberg stepped in as a replacement for Königssee. Königssee’s artificial sliding track, the oldest in the world, sustained a great deal of damage in July 2021 after heavy rainfall caused a mudslide and rockfall.

Athletes from 23 different countries are registered to compete in the final World Cup weekend of 2021. There are 27 athletes signed up to compete in the women’s skeleton and 29 in the men’s skeleton. Then there are 29 teams in the 2-man bobsleigh and 26 in the 4-man bobsleigh. A total of 22 teams are registered for the 2-woman bobsleigh, while 24 pilots will be competing in the women’s monobob world series.

Kimberley Bos (NED, women’s skeleton), Christopher Grotheer (GER, men’s skeleton), Laura Nolte (GER, 2-woman bobsleigh) and Francesco Friedrich (GER, 2-man and 4-man bobsleigh) are currently leading the rankings in their respective disciplines.

In the women’s monobob world series, Elana Meyers Taylor (USA) has a clear lead. At 37, she is the oldest pilot in the field. She has won three out of the four races held during the World Cup so far, most recently setting a starting record and track record in Winterberg. She finished in sixth place at the first race in Altenberg.

In early December, four out of the six victories in the World Cup races and the gold for the women’s monobob world series in Altenberg all went to the home team from Germany. World Champion Tina Hermann and Axel Jungk (both GER) won the two skeleton events, while World and Olympic Champion Francesco Friedrich won both the 2-man and 4-man bobsleigh. The US anthem rang out during the awards ceremony for the 2-woman bobsleigh and monobob: World Champion Kaillie Humphries (USA) won both races.

In the 4-man bobsleigh, the sixth of the season’s eight races is already on the agenda for Altenberg. Because Sigulda (LAT), which will host the tour in early January, is only suitable for 2-man sleds, Winterberg hosted two 4-man bobsleigh races last week to balance things out. Altenberg will therefore see the 4-man event taking one small step closer to the Olympic season’s overall winner being named. The current leader has yet to be beaten: the World and Olympic Champion Francesco Friedrich. After taking a break for a week, the 2-man bobsleigh is back on the schedule in Altenberg. Friedrich celebrated his 40th World Cup victory in the 2-man event in Altenberg, while he secured 4-man bobsleigh win number 20 in the racing series in Winterberg last week. ©RWH2021

Altenberg timetable
Zeitplan AGB E

Subject to changes – Up-to-date times (local time at the track and the user’s local time) are listed on the IBSF website. ©RWH2021 

On the sidelines

Cody Sorensen (CAN) is making his comeback as a 4-man brakeman in the BMW IBSF World Cup 2021/2022 after a break of more than seven years. After the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi (RUS), when he crashed out in the second heat in pilot Justin Kripps’ 4-man bobsleigh squad (who ultimately finished in 27th place), the now 35-year-old decided to end his career as an athlete. Cody Sorensen has been back in the sled since the start of the season – this time competing as part of Christopher Spring’s 4-man team. The Canadian quartet’s best result of the Olympic season to date? Eleventh place in Altenberg.  ©RWH2021

At the age of 37, Katie Uhlaender (USA) is the oldest athlete competing in the women’s skeleton – and she is now racing faster than she was at the beginning of her career. When she achieved gold in Winterberg in February 2007 – at the age of 22 – her best starting time was 5.36 seconds. The 2012 World Champion’s best starting time at the BMW IBSF World Cup in Winterberg 15 years later? Just 5.34 seconds. Also 37, her US teammate Elana Meyers Taylor is in equally good form, setting both the starting and track records for the women’s monobob in Winterberg. ©RWH2021 

Skeleton athlete Marina Gilardoni (SUI) is ruled out for the remainder of the 2021/2022 Olympic winter season as reported by Swiss Sliding in its newsletter in early December. The 2020 World Championship silver medallist is suffering from the effects of concussion and is currently taking part in gentle training. “As much as I love my sport and competing against the best in the world – my health is more important than any Olympics could ever be. I will take more time for rehab until I get back on my sled, that was never a question!” posted the 34-year-old on Instagram. Carolin Andrae will be competing for Switzerland in the BMW IBSF World Cup in Altenberg. The 20-year-old finished in 27th on her debut in Winterberg (GER). ©RWH2021

Online press conference for the BMW IBSF World Cup in Altenberg 

Bob: Wednesday, 15.12.2021, 12.00 h (dial-in from 11.45 h)

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87123237254?pwd=RUNNSkV2cmRpanFOOGdGc1dGVFVOUT09

Meeting ID: 871 2323 7254 Identification code: 804807

Interlocutors (subject to change at short notice):

- Jens Morgenstern, OC Head Wintersport Altenberg (Osterzgebirge) GmbH (WiA)

- Mariama Jamanka & Alexandra Burghardt (GER)

- Johannes Lochner (GER)

- Francesco Friedrich (GER)

- René Spies (GER), national coach

Skeleton: Thursday, 16.12.2021, 12.00 hrs (dial-in at 11.45 hrs)

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84679837868?pwd=WHUwazJsb042TUVhSjBpVTgxVXhrdz09

Meeting ID: 846 7983 7868 Identification code: 448568

Interlocutors (subject to change at short notice):

- Jens Morgenstern, OC Head Wintersport Altenberg (Osterzgebirge) GmbH (WiA)

- Jacqueline Lölling (GER)

- Axel Jungk (GER)

- Alexander Gassner (GER)

- Christian Baude (GER), national coach

Questions for the participants can be sent in advance by e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

or asked during the virtual press meeting in the Zoom chat.

This season’s winners in the 2021/2022 BMW IBSF World Cup – Skeleton

 Skel

 

 

This season’s winners in the 2021/2022 BMW IBSF World Cup – Women's bobsleigh

 BobW

 

This season’s winners in the 2021/2022 BMW IBSF World Cup – Men's bobsleigh

 BobM

 

>> Athlete profiles on ibsf.org with medals tables, news and photos for all athletes 

>> All results from IBSF races and training sessions

>> Photos: IBSF Flickr account (for editorial purposes only and with photo credits!)

>> Press accreditation is available from the respective track – please consult the COVID-19 regulations in good time and register in advance! >> IBSF COVID-19 regulations 

As usual, all races in the 2021/2022 BMW IBSF Bobsleigh and Skeleton World Cup will be available to view on a live stream on ibsf.org (with live results ticker) or YouTube. Information about channels and TV broadcasts is available at ibsf.org/de/sender 

         

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