Bobsleigh pilot Kim Kalicki: Hard work for the lightweight

Dhe seat of the passenger has not yet been firmly assigned. Kim Kalicki will test four different brakemen in the first few weeks of the new World Cup season in order to determine who should race through the Olympic ice track in Yanqing with the bobsleigh pilot from Wiesbaden in February. At the start of last weekend in Innsbruck, Magdeburg’s Anabel Galander sat behind the 24-year-old. The two could be “definitely satisfied” (Kalicki) with second place behind Laura Nolte and Leonie Fiebig from Winterberg. On Sunday, at the second race on the same track in Austria, Fiebig will change to Kalicki’s sled.

Knowledge has never been more valuable

Read F + 30 days for free now and get access to all articles on FAZ.NET.

READ F + NOW


Everything this winter is geared towards being in the games in China and then being ahead. For the German sportswomen, this means more cooperation than competition. They are only allowed to travel to Asia with three teams if they come in at least second in comparison with Canada and Russia. In addition to the usual two-man performance, the results in the monobob also play a role. In this, says Kalicki, the athletes from other nations have gained more and more experience. “That’s why we exchange ideas intensively.”

Your own twelfth place at the season debut in Igls should be followed by better and better tours. “We haven’t found the optimal setting yet,” says Kalicki. After all, you have only been dealing with this new challenge in the Olympic program since last season. In addition, as a lightweight, which weighs only 74 kilograms, it is not only very exhausting for her to get the bobsleigh, which weighs at least 163 kilograms as much as the two-man, into motion on her own.

In order to reach the limit, you also have to put additional load on the device. “So I’m doubly disadvantaged.” The two-man is more stable to drive. “The fact that you have nothing on the axle at the back makes it easier for you to slip out of the curves in a single,” says Kalicki. However, every test and every race serves to improve consistency and performance.

“That was one of the most blatant competitions”

Developing a good driving experience and withstanding pressure with a robust set of nerves is what sets the former athlete apart. In bobsleigh, in which the former hurdler first tried her hand in 2015, she was on the steering ropes in twos and quickly achieved success. Two years after joining the team, the talent was the U-23 world champion for the first time, and the police commissioner finished her first two World Cup competitions in the big players in 2020 and 2021 with silver.

The athlete from TuS Eintracht Wiesbaden never let herself be slowed down by falling falls and injuries. But a battered flexor almost brought the 2019 World Cup debutant out of the series. After good preparation up to then, Kalicki had to take a break from July due to the injury and was only 100 percent fit again after ten weeks. In the selection on the future Olympic track, she was half a second behind Stephanie Schneider before the last round. Then she snatched the third and last ticket from under the nose of the Oberwiesenthalerin stumbling in the final run.

“That was one of the most blatant competitions I have ever experienced,” said Kalicki after the “super nerve-wracking” decision. Not only because of the ban on spectators caused by the pandemic, a foretaste of what to expect at the games at the same place. The Olympic track in Beijing, which is located in the ski area of ​​the Chinese capital, is “very demanding”. You are not in danger of falling on the descents, but you can lose a lot of time in some corners. “Even if you are in first place for three runs, if you bump into it, you can still fall back to eighth place.” She has never seen anything like this on any other track, says Kim Kalicki.

Leave a Comment