Winterberg: Laura Nolte celebrates her fourth victory and European title

Laura Nolte (Winterberg) won her home race in the World Cup impressively. Will there be more to follow the European Championship this season?

Laura Nolte also enjoyed this moment of triumph, although she was not personally on the podium. With her victory at the home World Cup in Winterberg, the bobsleigh pilot of the BSC Winterberg also won the European championship, which was rated at the same time – and thus her first title outside of the junior division. But the 22-year-old sent her pusher Deborah Levi to the award ceremony. Because this contributed a lot to the first home win – and to the first title of possibly three this season?

Nolte am Start stark

“Our start times were mega strong,” said Nolte after the race, “that was also one of the reasons why it worked out so well below.” In fact, at the start, Nolte and Levi presented themselves as from a different planet compared to the competition on this day.

The clock stopped for the two of them at 5.49 seconds (in the first run) and 5.47 seconds (in the second run). The second best start time was provided by pilot Mariama Jamanka (BRC Thuringia) with her push-puller Leonie Fiebig (BSC Winterberg). But 5.59 seconds each meant a mortgage of a tenth, which is difficult to catch up on the train.

Praise from the national coach

“Laura and Debbi have again impressed with top start times,” said head coach René Spies, praising the new European champions. “They made small mistakes on the track, but all in all it was a deserved win,” he added. “There were two or three things in the first run. I was able to eradicate them, so that the second was significantly better,” explained Nolte.

Spies was even more satisfied that Kim Kalicki / Ann-Christin Strack in second (+0.42 seconds) and Jamanka / Fiebig in third (+0.79) made the German triple success perfect. Jamanka / Fiebig shared third place and EM bronze with the Austrian Beierl / Onasanya at the same time.

North American women back

“This is an outstanding result for us, although the North Americans have returned to the World Cup here in Winterberg,” said Spies. Elana Meyers Taylor, the reigning world champion Kaillie Humphries (both USA) and Christine de Bruin (Canada) finished in seventh, sixth and fifth.

Nolte and Levi were in any case unimpressed by the return of the competition, which will become stronger as the season progresses. “We’re concentrating on ourselves and on the next race,” said the pilot, who celebrated her World Cup premiere in Winterberg a year ago and was third at the time. The win in Winterberg is now her fourth in the World Cup.

Special order in St. Moritz

With immediate effect, the focus is therefore on the upcoming World Cup in St. Moritz, Switzerland (January 17th). After the World Cup race, however, Nolte will not continue traveling with the World Cup entourage, but will start at the Junior World Championships in St. Moritz on January 22nd, in order to gain a personal right to start – and thus a fourth place for the German team – at the Secure the World Cup in Altenberg in early February.

“We’ll try, but of course you shouldn’t underestimate the competition,” she said, referring to the second title of the season that she could win. The third would be the World Cup crown in Altenberg. At the 2020 World Cup in the Ore Mountains, however, Nolte fell several times and was taken out of the competition by head coach Spies at half time. If she managed to win this time – she would probably not miss the personal jump on the podium.


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