Team Germany as Friendly Ambassador in PyeongChang

copyright: DOSB/Fotograf: David Daub


Team Germany looking forward to the 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in PyeongChang with great excitement. The athletes in particular can hardly wait for the start of the Olympic Games on 9 February and the Paralympics on 9 March.

But there is still a lot of work to be done by everyone involved. Until the membership in Team Germany is set on 23 January, following the second and final round of selections by the German Olympic Sports Confederation (DOSB) for the Olympic Games in PyeongChang, the athletes will still have to undergo some strenuous training sessions and, above all, successfully complete their qualifying competitions.

In the last winter season 2016-17, the German team celebrated numerous world championship titles and World Cup victories: such as the five titles won by Laura Dahlmeier at the biathlon world championships and the successful Nordic combined athletes and ski jumpers, to name just a few. That is why we, of course, hope to be travelling to PyeongChang with a strong Team Germany. Anyone familiar with sports knows that results cannot automatically be repeated and that every major event starts from zero. We need only think of the ski jumper Severin Freund, who has had so much success, but will have to miss the Olympic season due to two ACL tears.

Nonetheless, we want to try at least to replicate the results achieved at the Winter Olympic Games in Sochi in 2014 or even to improve on them. First and foremost, we hope that the team stays injury-free and can start the Games in PyeongChang in top shape.

But we are particularly looking forward to the German athletes acting as congenial ambassadors for our country in Korea. Just like us, our athletes only want to celebrate medals that have been won fairly. They do not only have athletic success, but as popular figures and role models, they embody numerous values that are of enormous importance for both our sports and our society. Most recently, they convincingly demonstrated this to a large public at the Olympic Games in Rio.

Outside of the Olympic Games, our Olympic athletes are not nearly as well known in our country as Germany’s best footballers, for example. For this reason and to ensure that they receive the greater public recognition and attention that they deserve in the run-up to the Winter Olympic Games in PyeongChang, we have started the “Remember My Face” campaign. The name says it all. For the campaign is centred around portraits of the Olympic athletes with focussed, determined faces and the clear message: “Remember my face!”.

Ten athletes from Team Germany have been photographed for the campaign: including five-time biathlon world champion Laura Dahlmeier, team Olympic gold medallist in ski jumping Andreas Wellinger, Olympic gold medallist in Nordic combination Eric Frenzel, Olympic bronze medallist in cross-country skiing Stefanie Böhler, many-time biathlon world champion Simon Schempp, and Germany’s best short track racer Anna Seidel.

The kick-off for the campaign was the presentation, together with our equipment partner adidas, of the Olympic team apparel on 2 November 2017. The athletes from Team Germany already took the opportunity to show their faces, and thus also their personalities, on the big screen – their determined attitude with an absolutely focussed look.

In Germany, we are thus already strongly focussed on the Games in February. Preparations have intensified with several trips to PyeongChang: most recently, by a team of experts in October. “We made sure that the sports facilities really are in outstanding condition”, Dirk Schimmelpfennig, the Chef de Mission and chairman for competitive sports at the German Olympic Sports Confederation, explained after returning from Korea. “This was also confirmed by all the athletes who took part in the Olympic and Paralympic test competitions last year. The Olympic villages are already in good shape, with living conditions for athletes and support staff fulfilling the standards required for the Olympic Games.”

With the start of the World Cup season for different sports in 2017-18, the race is also on for the places at the starting line in the Olympic Games. To be selected as a member of the team by the German Olympic Sports Confederation, the basic principle applies that the athlete must have a realistic chance of reaching a final (or a place among the top eight finishers). The criteria for the individual sports are determined by the individual sports federations in coordination with the competitive sports section of the German Olympic Sports Confederation. Beside the purely sport-related aspects, the Confederation has also agreed on additional principles for being selected for the Olympic team.

These include, as mandatory pre-requisite, proof of regular doping tests – not just in competitions, but also during training. If these criteria have been met, the Board of Directors of the Confederation names the members of Team Germany for the Olympic Games on the recommendation of the individual sports federations and with the agreement of the Executive Committee. This also includes naming of support staff, trainers, doctors, physiotherapists, and ski, bobsleigh and toboggan technicians, whose total number is about half the number of athletes. All members of the team must sign the “Eligibility Code” of the IOC. The code obliges them to abide by the rules of the IOC and also, for example, to limit personal advertising activities during the Games.

The transport of sports equipment and other materials entails a massive logistical effort. The transport by air freight of the bobsleighs and toboggans, the extensive skiing equipment, and the voluminous equipment required by the ice hockey team figure among the greatest challenges faced during the Winter Games. The large amount of Olympic baggage also includes the equipment needed by the doctors and physiotherapists, office technology, team brochures, and gifts for the hosts. All this adds up to a freight volume of over 150 tonnes.

The members of team management already take all necessary measures before the Games, in order to offer the athletes the best possible conditions on site. During the Games, team management meetings are held early in the morning every day, in order to make sure that the many different organisational challenges can be adequately met. This work that goes on in the background also contributes to the team’s success, even if the attention of sports enthusiasts in Germany and the general public is, of course, focussed entirely on the athletes. But their success is always a reflection of the outstanding work of the entire team.

As a national meeting point for Team Germany and the Olympic family, the Deutsches Haus has been set up in the middle of the action in Yongpyong Resort Birch Hill GC, with a view of the ski jumps. Thanks to the organisational efforts of the German Olympic Sports Confederation affiliate, Deutsche Sport-Marketing (DSM), the Deutsches Haus will once again be an atmospheric meeting place. The Confederation will use it as a platform for its receptions, for daily official press conferences, and as a stage for its partners. Above all, however, it will be used by the athletes to celebrate what we hope will be a great deal of athletic success.

Team Germany dates:

11 - 25 January: Outfitting in Munich
16 January: First selection meeting in Frankfurt
23 January: Second selection meeting in Frankfurt
8 - 24 February:  Deutsches Haus PyeongChang 2018
9 February: Opening ceremony, Olympic Games PyeongChang 2018
25 February: Closing ceremony, Olympic Games PyeongChang 2018
9 March: Opening ceremony, Paralympic Games
10 - 17 March: Deutsches Haus Paralympics PyeongChang 2018
18 March: Closing ceremony, Paralympic Games PyeongChang 2018



Ulrike Spitz
+49 69 6700-349

DSM (Deutsches Haus):

Claudia Wagner
+49 69 69580124