Germany slide to double victory in skeleton
Germany slid to gold in both the women's and the men's skeleton on Saturday, with Jacqueline Loelling and Sebastian Berneker taking the top spots respectively.
Jacqueline’s time of 57.43 seconds was almost a full second faster than silver medallist Carina Mair (AUT), who marked a time of 58.40.
Considered one of the world`s top female skeleton athletes of any age, the 16-year-old always looked favourite for the gold after winning the German National Championships last December.
Her fellow countryman, Sebastian Berneker, however, is fairly new to the sport of skeleton, but he showed he has what it takes to become one of Germany’s great sliders by winning the gold in an impressive time of 1:52.73.
Sebastian insisted his start technique was the key to his triumph and despite losing precious seconds in the corners but he still finished on top of the podium.
“Even now I’m still average like all the others when it comes to driving,” the young athlete said. “But my start is so great so that makes a big difference, especially on this track.”
The 16-year-old was invited to join the German skeleton team a year ago and found he had a talent for sliding.
“I expected good results but I never thought it was going to be a medal and I never, ever thought it was going to be a Gold medal,” the German added.
Stefan Richard Geisler (AUT), an Innsbruck local, was greeted with great fanfare by the crowd gathered at the finish area as he celebrated his silver medal.
"It means so much to me to win a Youth Olympic medal here in my hometown,” he said. “This is easily the most beautiful day in my career.”