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German winter Olympic coaches expect strong team China******
By Oliver Trust
BERLIN, Oct. 29 (Xinhua) -- German bobsleigh and skeleton athletes expect a strong team China competing at the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics.
"We have to include Chinese athletes to the ones competing for medals at the Olympics. They are fast starters and have gained experience," said German skeleton head coach Christian Baude.
Baude and his team this week returned from test runs held on the new Olympic track in Yanqing, a northern suburb of Beijing.
The German coach said China's skeleton athletes "are fast starters."
German bobsleigh coach Rene Spies said this year's European Cup events taking place in advance of the Beijing Olympics will function as preparation events for athletes.
"We are eager to see what Chinese drivers are capable of. Fact is, we don't underestimate their skills. It's all about reaching the best level when we start in China," Spies added.
Spies said the German bob team is one of the favourites due to the latest results, but "the favourite role isn't in my mind at all. We know we face strong competitors and have to perform on the highest level."
To meet expectations the German Olympic association has initiated several innovations regarding equipment and training methods.
While bobsleigh drivers benefit from a newly created bob simulator, advanced spike plates for their shoes used in competition rely on a database performance analysis provided by a new measure sledge.
The association is counting on close cooperation with the science department of its sponsor, car manufacturer BMW. Due to limited tests caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, German officials looked for new solutions.
The spike plates, printed in a 3D process, are made of titanium and Inconel, material normally used in rocket science.
To discover the secrets of the new track, bob drivers count on a simulator similar to the one used by car-race drivers.
Olympic bob Champion Francesco Friedrich made 20 runs in the simulator before attending tests on the new Olympic track in Yanqing.
The simulator tests made things easier for training in China, as the new track delivers so far unknown challenges. "We knew from the start about the track's curves. It's a great help when you have to compete on a track without many training sessions," the bob pilot said.
Friedrich and colleagues will use experience made in the test runs in Yanqing to update the simulator.
Three times Olympic Champion Felix Loch called the measure sledge a great help "as it makes us find the perfect line down the track."
Loch and compatriots have been working on the project for over two years.
Association director Alexander Resch announced to use the simulator mainly in talent training and for the Olympic athletes.
"This new digital level gives us valuable support to prepare for competition and allows youngsters to get a deeper idea about the requirements of the sport," the official added. Enditem
Chinese shares close higher Friday******
BEIJING, Nov. 12 (Xinhua) -- Chinese stocks closed higher on Friday, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index up 0.18 percent, at 3,539.1 points.。
The Shenzhen Component Index closed 0.04 percent higher at 14,705.37 points. Enditem。
Fluminense dent Flamengo's title hopes******
RIO DE JANEIRO, Oct. 23 (Xinhua) -- Flamengo's hopes of winning a third consecutive Brazilian Serie A title suffered a blow on Saturday when the Rio de Janeiro giants succumbed 3-1 to local rivals Fluminense.
John Kennedy struck either side of halftime for Fluminense before Rene gave Flamengo a glimmer of hope with a 71st minute strike at the Maracana.
But Abel Hernandez put the result beyond doubt five minutes from time as Fluminense secured their 10th win of the campaign to move up to eighth in the 20-team standings.
Flamengo dropped to third, 10 points behind leaders Atletico Mineiro, who are due to face Cuiaba at home on Sunday.
In other Brazilian Serie A fixtures on Saturday, America Mineiro won 2-0 at Santos, Juventude were held to a goalless home draw by Ceara and Fortaleza won 3-0 at home to Athletico Paranaense. Enditem