Germany is usually a strong contender in the Winter Olympics, and just three days in to the 2018 games in PyeongChang, the country’s athletes are fighting strong to hold onto the reputation with some impressive victories and a lead in the gold medal count.
Below is a roundup of the seven medals that German athletes have won during the first three days of the 2018 Winter Olympics.
Gold Medals (4)
Women’s 7.5km Sprint
Silver: Marte Olsbu (NOR) 21:30.4
Bronze: Veronika Vitkova (CZE) 21:32.0
Laura Dahlmeier (24) won her first Olympic gold medal with her 21 minutes, 6.2 seconds finish in the women’s 7.5km biathlon sprint. She was also one of only three competitors to shoot a perfect 10 out of 10 in the rifle portion. This first win was also only the beginning of her successful run in these games.
In an interview with NBC after her win, she commented on the “not so good [weather] conditions” the athletes had to face in the competition. “It was really cold in the evening and also on the shooting range we had a lot of wind,” Dahlmeier told NBC.
Men’s Normal Hill Individual
Silver: Johann Andre Forfang (NOR) 250.9 points
Bronze: Robert Johansson (NOR) 249.7 points
After being a part of the German team that took gold in the team large hill in the Sochi games four years ago, Andreas Wellinger (22) was expected to place high in this year’s ski jump events, but expectations of gold were reserved for fellow team mate Richard Freitag. With an impressive leap of 113.5 meters in the Normal Hill Individual Final though, Wellinger’s 259.3 point finish put him at the top as Freitag pulled a disappointing ninth place finish.
Men’s 10km Sprint
Silver: Michal Krcmar (CZE) 23:43.2
Bronze: Dominik Windisch (ITA) 23:46.5
Going into the event, Germany’s Arnd Peiffer (30) was not on the list of expected winners, but after several top contenders faced early penalties, the field was open for Peiffer to grab gold with a finish time of 23 minutes, 38.8 seconds. Shooting a perfect 10 for 10 in the shooting bouts only helped Peiffer secure the win. This is his second career olympic medal.
Peiffer apparently had a rough morning before the race, telling Reuters, “this morning and I wanted to do some dry shooting, and I got to the stadium when I realized I forgot the key to my rifle storage. Then in the afternoon I almost fell down the stairs in the wax cabin and I hit my elbow […] Then this part of the rifle broke, part of the bolt, and I thought, that’s a good day.”
Women’s 10km Pursuit
Silver: Anatasiya Kuzmina (SVK) 31:04.7
Bronze: Anais Bescond (FRA) 31:04.9
One gold medal wasn’t enough for Laura Dahlmeier as she is quickly proving herself in these Olympic Games. Her first place finish in the Women’s 10km Pursuit not only made her the first athlete in 2018 games to earn two medals, but she will also now go down in the record books as the first Olympian to win the sprint-pursuit double. Her earlier win in the 7.5km Sprint gave her a 24-second head start in this event, but even without it, Dahlmeier still would have been able to achieve gold.
Silver Medals (1)
Ladies’ Normal Hill Individual
Gold: Maren Lundby (NOR) 264.6 points
Bronze: Sara Takanashi (JPN) 243.8 points
The weather was brutal as the Olympic athletes geared up for the final Ladies’ Normal Hill Individual, but the frigid temps and harsh winds weren’t enough to keep Germany’s Katharina Althaus (21) off the podium as she ended the night with a Silver medal. Her final jump of 106.0 meters earned her a point total of 252.6, beating out Japan’s Sara Takanashi – a gold medal favorite. Althaus’ score wasn’t able to beat out Norway’s Maren Lundby, who took the gold, but it wasn’t a defeat in her eyes. Coming off the podium, Althaus told NBC her “goal was to stand on the podium. I’m so happy that I can reach this goal.”
Bronze Medals (2)
Gold: David Gleirscher (AUT) 3:10.702
Silver: Chris Mazdzer (USA) 3:10.728
The results of the Men’s Singles Luge event were anything but predictable. Germany’s Felix Loch was heavily favored to capture a third consecutive Olympic gold medal, but after crashing midway through his final run, the field was open for Johannes Ludwig (31), also from Germany, to earn a place on the podium. While not a first place finish, Ludwig did capture Bronze with a total run time of 3 minutes, 10.932 seconds, giving him his first Olympic win.
Men’s 12.5km Pursuit
Gold: Martin Fourcade (FRA) 32:51.7
Silver: Sebastian Samuelsson (SWE) 33:03.7
Going up against two-time gold medalist Martin Fourcade, who was also defending his 2014 Sochi win, wasn’t going to be an easy task for Germany’s Benedikt Doll (27), but the real battle turned out to be for who would take Silver. Doll and Swedish wunderkind Sebastian Samuelsson fought it out, but the young new talent took a slight lead, leaving Doll to finish with a still impressive Bronze at a time of 33 minutes, 6.8 seconds.