Honor in Baden-Baden: These are Germany’s athletes of the year 2023

Sports honor in Baden-Baden

These are Germany’s athletes of the year 2023

As of: 8:23 p.m. | Reading time: 4 minutes

One of the highlights of the German sporting year: the German basketball players’ World Cup triumph caused euphoria

Quelle: picture alliance/Xinhua News Agency/Meng Yongmin

While the favorites for the team and men prevailed in the election for Germany’s “Athletes of the Year”, things looked more open for the women. In the end, after six years, a winter athlete won again – and she was still “a bit shocked” in 2022.

Some not only wanted to be tuned in if they won, but also wanted to be there live and accept the award on site. The other had already said what a great honor it was to be nominated and how much the prize would mean to him – and after a lot of frustration last year, the other had hoped that winter athletes would finally be taken into account in the election for “Sportsman of the Year”. become.

For the 77th time, the “Athletes of the Year” were honored at a big gala this Sunday in the Kurhaus in Baden-Baden. The basketball world champions led by coach Gordon Herbert won the teams, the men’s gymnastics world champion Lukas Dauser and the women’s biathlon world champion Denise Herrmann-Wick, who has since retired – won – the latter, however, very narrowly.

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ZDF relied on a new moderation team for the broadcast this year. Lena Kesting and Sven Voss hosted the TV show. The duo followed Katrin Müller-Hohenstein and Rudi Cerne, who had recently hosted the gala for several years. Also new this year: The list of suggestions for the approximately 3,000 voting members of the Association of German Sports Journalists was compiled by Olympic squad athletes.

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Kesting and Voss were also able to welcome a lot of sports celebrities from the past and present that evening. While last year Eintracht Frankfurt President Peter Fischer had to accept the award for the team alone, this year Germany’s best teams were also well represented.

Game postponed for the honor

Whether it was the hockey world champions, the ice hockey silver winners or the basketball heroes – they all sent a number of people. Basketball national coach Gordon Herbert was accompanied by parts of the team and the association. The NBA stars around Dennis Schröder and Franz Wagner were unable to be there due to the schedule in North America, but four world champions are playing in the Bundesliga. The games between Bayern Munich (Bonga, Giffey, Obst) against Ulm and Berlin (Thiemann) in Oldenburg were postponed so that the athletes could be flown in. The German Ice Hockey Association (DEB) also had professionals flown in from the venues.

Lukas Dauser is the first German gymnastics world champion since Fabian Hambüchen in 2007

Quelle: picture alliance/dpa/Tom Weller

In contrast to the basketball team, gymnast Lukas Dauser was not considered a huge favorite, but was still the top favorite ahead of swimmer Florian Wellbrock (two world championship titles in open water) and rowing world champion Oliver Zeidler. And Dauser, the Olympic silver medalist in Tokyo and now also world champion on parallel bars, prevailed.

At her last major event, Denise Herrmann-Wick won gold again

Source: dpa/Angelika Warmuth

As of this year, Germany has a new big Olympic hope for Paris 2024 in the women’s category, 16-year-old Darja Varfolomeev. She achieved amazing things and won all four individual and all-around titles in rhythmic gymnastics. In the election, however, she received 21 fewer votes than an athlete who has been delivering success for many years, first in cross-country skiing, then in biathlon: Denise Herrmann-Wick, who crowned her last season with gold at the home World Championships.

“Last year I was a bit shocked”

The retired biathlon Olympic champion had already hoped before the gala that winter athletes would be considered more often for awards in the future. “Winter sports take place until March and then the successes are a long time ago. You can see how quickly sport is fleeting. “Some people doubt the perception of sport in Germany,” she said.

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The 34-year-old specifically recalled the previous year. At that time, 100-meter European champion Gina Lückekemper and European decathlon champion Niklas Kaul prevailed in the election. “Last year I was a bit shocked, I have to be honest,” said Herrmann-Wick.

These are Germany’s athletes of the year

The sporting year 2022 is over – so time to choose the best of the best. While two track and field athletes took the crown in the Sportsman and Sportsman of the Year categories, the footballers from Eintracht Frankfurt triumphed in the team sport.

In 2022, several German athletes, including you, celebrated Olympic victories in Beijing. Herrmann-Wick came fourth in the election, and record Olympic luge champion Natalie Geisenberger came third – clearly behind Brückenkemper and the second-placed long jump world champion Malaika Mihambo. Herrmann-Wick now said that she was thrilled to have watched Brückenkemper’s victory over 100 meters, that it was “a great race” and that “you don’t want to diminish the performance at all. But for every athlete, the Olympics are the highest and social success that one can achieve.”

Combined Olympic champion Vinzenz Geiger came in second in the 2022 election, well behind Kaul. The decathlete had found remarkable words on stage at the time and said with regard to the winter sports athletes: “I’m just sorry for the athletes.” In the Mainz native’s opinion, when and under what conditions a major event takes place always plays a role in such a choice . “There was a time difference of seven hours at the Winter Games. So you couldn’t follow them so well. In addition, the political situation was difficult – and so was the Corona situation. As a result, the sports euphoria didn’t arise as much.”

In previous years, female winter sports athletes had been honored. The last one was Laura Dahlmeier (2017). Magdalena Neuner (2007, 2011 and 2012) and Katja Seizinger (1994, 1996 and 1998) were honored three times. Ski racer Maria Höfl-Riesch won the prestigious election twice (2010 and 2014).

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Rhythmic sports gymnastics


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