Eugene (dpa) – Things didn’t go well at all for Infantry Christopher Link. Instead of fighting for a medal over the 20km at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene, USA, as he had hoped, he was left on Saturday night and gave up.
The 33-year-old, fourth and fifth in the 2019 and 2017 World Cup, explained his exit. “You have to see the big picture.” Now things should improve for him over the 35km run on July 24, the last day of the World Cup.
Soon he was overtaken by the competition. “The first kilometer was on the way to setting a world record,” said the fifth Olympian in 2016 and 2021. The task was “Reaction is actually reasonable”. It is better to save energy and not reach the finish line “with cramps”. The Japanese really pushed the pace: Toshikazu Yamaneshi successfully defended the world title with a time of 1:19.07, ahead of compatriot Koki Ikeda (1:19.14). Sweden’s Perseus Karlstrom won the bronze.
National coach Weigel showed his understanding
National team coach Ronald Weigl showed understanding for Linke’s mission. “He was fit but lacked energy,” he said. “He’s been the safe bank for 11 years. That’s why something like this could happen to him.” He also estimates that his stepson has chances of over 35 kilometers because he’s the stamina type. Linke also started over 50 kilometers – a distance that was replaced by 35 kilometers for the first time at the World Cup. “We’ll see a very different Christopher Link there,” Weigel said.
In the women’s category, 25-year-old Saskia Fiji took 15th place for a distance of more than 20 kilometers. The two-time German champion from Leipzig crossed the finish line in 1:32.12 hours. “My goal was to be among the top twenty beginners,” said the medical student. Feige finished 11th at the 2019 World Cup in Doha and had to give up early at the 2021 Olympics in Tokyo. Kimberly Garcia Leon of Peru became the world champion with a time of 1:26.58 minutes. She won the first medal for her country in the history of the World Cup.
© dpa-infocom, dpa: 220716-99-42263 / 3