Winter sports: Five reasons for Friedrich’s return to the bobsleigh throne

Winter sports: Five reasons for Friedrich’s return to the bobsleigh throne

Francesco Friedrich leaves nothing to chance. Especially not after a winless series like the last one in the two-man bobsleigh. He will be rewarded.

Francesco Friedrich’s announcement was unmistakable. The Dominator is back – and how. With a demonstration of his strength, he raced to his eighth World Cup title in the two-man bobsleigh and is also the top favorite in the premier class of four-man bobsleigh as World Cup leader. Nevertheless, the 33-year-old from Pirna struggled with his self-image in his former flagship discipline and was without a win in the small sled for almost 15 months. There are five reasons for returning to the bobsleigh throne.


No bobsleigh pilot is as meticulous as “Franz,” as he is called in the team. “He knows exactly what needs to be done, always thinks in a solution-oriented manner and leaves nothing to chance,” says head coach René Spies, praising the exceptional pilot. He searches and tinkers until even the smallest detail is found. “We found a small mistake, that made a big difference,” said Friedrich after winning the title.

Skid understander:

The Saxon grinds the runners of his vehicle longer, more intensively and more lovingly than all other bobsledders in the World Cup circus. Often for hours. Just like before the two-man bobsleigh race in Winterberg. “The runners were extremely well prepared. Our runner species helped us a lot. That’s such a small key to success,” said Friedrich.

Experience and ambition:

Especially when things don’t go as planned, which was rare in his career, every particle on the bob is turned around in order to squeeze out a hundredth of a second somewhere. Also on the train. “In training I chose the right points, where I placed the trainers and looked at where I might lose a lot of time,” said Friedrich. That paid off.

Exercise trainer Gerd Leopold:

The experienced coach, who led Harald Czudaj to the Olympic victory in Lillehammer in 1994, knows exactly what to do with his protégé, whom he described early on as the “talent of the century”. “A satisfaction for Franz, because you also learn from second and third places,” said Leopold, who has looked after the most successful bobsleigh pilot for more than two decades. His maxim: “The art of ability lies in the will.”


His pushers Thorsten Margis, Alexander Schüller, Candy Bauer and Felix Straub are a close-knit, well-rehearsed and, above all, extremely strong team. The hundred-pound colossi live by the idea of ​​performance and are sometimes persuaded by team boss Friedrich or home coach Leopold to do other training stimuli such as yoga.

Source: Stern

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