On Tuesday there was already a lot of activity on the Olympic square, where the modern pentathlon, among other things, will take place from Thursday. Most of the tents had already been set up for the temporary stadium, the appropriate flags were flapping in the wind in the bright sunshine and there was a certain amount of anticipation in the air among those involved.
It is the third time that “The Finals” will take place in Berlin. “Berlin is the sports metropolis and I am happy and proud that we were able to bring the event to Berlin for the third time,” says Iris Spranger, Senator for the Interior, Digitization and Sport of the State of Berlin.
Under the slogan “More sport, more diversity, more Berlin”, the sporting event is intended to bring people together. “When you do sport, my impression is that you do a lot for yourself, but also a lot for society,” says Spranger.
In Berlin there are now a lot of new things in all sports and also with the National Summer Games of Special Olympics Germany, which started on June 19th with around 4500 athletes with and without disabilities under the motto “Strong together”. an important milestone on the way to the Special Olympics World Games Berlin 2023, the world’s largest inclusive sports event.
“Inclusion must be a matter of course and also that athletes with mental or other disabilities are just normal athletes. That stands for Berlin with more diversity.”
At the 2022 finals, 190 German championship titles in 14 sports will be awarded within four days at nine different sports venues throughout the city, with the Olympic Square being one of them. The sports fencing and rowing are new and for the first time the German Championships will be held at the multi-sport event in all four Olympic gymnastics.
While men’s and women’s apparatus gymnastics were disciplines from the start, rhythmic gymnastics was added in Dortmund in 2021. This time, at the third edition, the trampoline gymnasts will also demonstrate their skills in front of the audience in the Max-Schmeling-Halle in Berlin.
The reigning runner-up Nina Eim from the Triathlon Potsdam association will be there again this year: “I was second twice and have good memories of the finals.” not predict.
“The level has risen quite a bit with us women in the last few years and it can therefore be a very exciting fight for the medals,” says the 23-year-old, who only became European champion in the super sprint distance in May. She sees a particular challenge when swimming in Wannsee, or rather after it.
Because to get onto the bike course, the triathletes first have to overcome around 80 steps. “It’s definitely very tiring. You can make up a lot of time there, but you can also lose it,” says Eim.
So while Eim does not want to be carried away by a clear declaration of war for the title, the reigning German champion in javelin throw, Julian Weber, finds clearer words and would like to crack the 90 meter distance, at which he just recently failed.
“Everything is possible in the Olympic Stadium. I’m in a good mood and the competitions are a lot of fun,” says the 27-year-old. After his bitter fourth place at the Olympics in Tokyo last year, he definitely wants to defend his title, but he also knows about the strong competition: “We’ll battle it out properly on the blue track. It will be an exciting competition.”
In the Olympic Stadium, spectators are still sitting a little far away from the said blue lane, the opposite awaits sports fans at the 3×3 basketball, which will take place at the Neptunbrunnen. Leon Ready will start with his team, LFDY Düsseldorf, and has similarly high goals as Weber: “The competition is definitely there, but because we are almost the only professional team in Germany, our goal is already clear defines that we want to light up the championship ring after the final.”
This form of basketball, played three-on-three to a goal, is relatively new and has recently become Olympic. “It’s much more fast-paced than a five-on-five and it’s definitely more event-heavy,” says the 21-year-old. “Here alone the finals at the Neptunbrunnen are not in some sports hall 300 km away, but in a public place where hopefully there will be a lot of spectators.”
The broadcasters ARD and ZDF will broadcast the sports event live for more than 25 hours from June 23rd to 26th in the main programs and thus ensure the necessary coverage that such small sports rarely get.
“We started something brand new and it was wonderful to see it being embraced. We went from two days to four days of competition and thus have the opportunity to show more sports with more visibility,” explains ARD sports coordinator Axel Balkausky. Well-known celebrities are also on ZDF with ex-canoeist Ronald Rauhe and rapper Marteria.
The finals will create a special flair in Berlin, and not just because of the five rings that can be seen in the background of the Olympic square. The organizers are hoping that as many spectators as possible will be there and that a touch of the Olympics could arise throughout the city.