Germany strikes gold at Winter Games | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 23.02.2010
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Sports

Germany strikes gold at Winter Games

The German women's cross-country team claimed victory at the Vancouver 2010 Winter Games. Axel Teichmann and Tim Tscharnke won silver in the men's cross-country team sprint and Germany placed second in ski-jumping.

Claudia Nystad, left, and Evi Sachenbacher-Stehle celebrate another podium win for Germany

Claudia Nystad, left, and Evi Sachenbacher-Stehle celebrate another podium win for Germany

Germany claimed their seventh gold medal at the Vancouver Olympics on Monday, winning the women's cross-country team sprint title at the Whistler Olympic Park, as favorites Sweden took the silver while Russia had to settle for bronze.

The German team of Evi Sachenbacher-Stehle and Claudia Nystad finished in a time of 18mins 3.7seconds, just six-tenths of a second ahead of Sweden. The Russian pair was 4.0 seconds off the pace.

The race came down to a tight final leg with Germany's Nystad clinging onto the lead despite a strong challenge by Sweden's Anna Haag, who seemed to have victory in her sights.

Gold, silver and bronze Olympic medals

Germany has seven gold, nine silver and five bronze Olympic medals

The German kept her nerve and then attacked in the final straight to pick up another gold medal for Germany at the Winter Games.

"I decided to just try everything, give it all I got," said Nystad. "I had no feelings, just a plan."

Russia and Italy were locked in a battle for bronze and stayed in contention, but it was all Germany and Sweden.

The victory brought Germany level with the United States at seven gold medals, with the total German medal tally at 21, three behind the US team. Norway are in third place after 53 out of 86 events.

Photo finish

The German duo of Axel Teichmann and Tim Tscharnke won silver in the men's cross-country team sprint freestyle in a photo finish over Russia's Nikolay Morilov and Alexey Pethukov. Norway clinched gold with Petter Northug teaming up with Peystein Pettersen, who was standing in for Ola Vigen Hattestad.

Northug showed his closing ablity as he overtook Teichmann seemingly without effort shortly before the finish, parading down the final straight for his first Olympic gold medal. The Norwegian duo finished in a winning time of 19 minutes and 1 second in the freestyle event, which features a two-man relay around a 1.6-kilometer course.

Austrian domination

Michael Neumayer, Andreas Wank, Martin Schmitt and Michael Uhrmann

Michael Neumayer, Andreas Wank, Martin Schmitt and Michael Uhrmann

Germany placed second in the team ski jumping event, but were outclassed by Austria who have now won five in a row at world championships and the Olympics, equaling Finland's record number of titles. Gregor Schlierenzauer led the way for a second straight Olympic gold in the event. He soared 140.5 meters and 146.5 meters as the Austrian team including Wolfgang Loitzl, Andreas Kofler and Thomas Morgenstern amassed 1,107.9 points. Germany took silver with 1,035.8 points and Norway got bronze with 1,030.3 points.

nrt/dpa/Reuters/AFP

Editor: Rick Demarest