Laura Gimmler, Katharina Hennig, Pia Fink and Victoria Carl after their silver medal run
Photo: JOE KLAMAR / AFP
The German cross-country skiers won silver in the relay at the World Championships in Planica and ended a twelve-year dry spell.
Laura Gimmler, Katharina Hennig, Pia Fink and Victoria Carl were only beaten by the defending champions from Norway after 4×5 kilometers, bronze went to Sweden.
For the German Ski Association (DSV), it was the first cross-country medal at a World Championships since 2011. The German women's relay had even made it onto the podium for the last time in 2009.
With the eleventh medal in Slovenia, the DSV also broke the German World Cup record from 2017.
On the demanding and icy course, everything went according to plan for the DSV team from the start: after her five kilometers, starting runner Gimmler handed over to Hennig as part of a four-man lead group, the medal contenders from the USA were already distanced at this point.
Carl stays cool as the anchor
On the second leg, Hennig, together with Sweden, Norway and Finland, extended the lead over the rest of the field and handed over to Fink while in the lead.
The Norwegian Ingvild Flugstad Östberg pulled away, but Fink surpassed himself and showed one of the best races of her life.
She shook off Sweden and Finland and surrendered in second place.
Everything now depended on last runner Carl.
The team sprint Olympic champion was unable to move forward, but she confidently secured second place and was greeted by her cheering teammates at the finish.
"I'm really happy because something is growing together here," said national coach Peter Schlickenrieder after the great success on ARD, "that's a very important milestone that we've achieved." Winning the medal is "a great achievement, expectations are increasing .
You have to cope with that.«
In Planica there are two more chances until Sunday, albeit smaller ones: On Friday, the men's relay hopes for a top result, as does Hennig on Saturday over 30 kilometers.