DOSB head alfons hormann demands consequences from the german speed skating community after the mudslinging with claudia pechstein by national coach erik bouwman.
"The fact that a reigning national coach is making such a quality statement against a team member on the day before the world championship makes me wonder," hormann told the german press agency. "The associated interference in the personnel reorganization of the prasidium of the DESG is unacceptable. We very much hope that the current leadership of the association will immediately bring about an appropriate clarification," demanded hormann, who is following the developments with concern.
Bouwman had sharply attacked pechstein in a letter published by "bild" and accused the 48-year-old berliner of trying to use "populist propaganda" to secure the way for her own profit. She wears "a mask with a vicious double agenda," bouwman wrote. "There are many who think like me. And it can’t be that everyone just watches and no one says anything," the dutchman said in an interview with the german press agency. "That’s why it was now before the world championships and the elections in the DESG on 28. March the right time."
The federation was surprised by bouwman’s remarks. "This escalation is not in the sense of the DESG", it hailed in a terse statement. DESG now wants to deal with the issue internally – consequences uncertain. On friday, bouwman had continued his general reckoning in the dutch daily newspaper "de telegraaf. "We have a snake pit here with people who belong to a very negative current," he said referring to pechstein.
Active spokesman moritz geisreiter made clear "how annoying and disturbing" the ongoing conflict is for the athletes. Bouwman’s choice of words was "maybe a bit too sharp," but athlete voices he has been hearing for weeks "go in a similar direction". In principle, bouwman’s remarks show that he is interested in the development of the association. "The reasons for the misdevelopments lie with our association," geisreiter told the dpa.
In the meantime, former DESG president gerd heinze has taken sides with pechstein and denounced bouwman’s incendiary letter as "outrageous". "His association-damaging performance at the beginning of the world championships must have consequences," wrote heinze on facebook.
According to bouwman, a group led by pechstein "sabotages" the federation’s plan to join the top nations. Pechstein and co. Believed sacredly in the method by which the east german top skaters had become rough. "But the developments in speed skating are so fast. Standig there is renewal."If you do not participate, you will lose. "This happened in germany. We are now a developing country."
The conflict, which has been smoldering for months, has escalated because pechstein’s life-threatener, matthias grobe, is applying for the vacant office of president in the federation and has announced that he would renounce the coach if he were elected. "It had rough consequences if rough is chosen," warned bouwman. "I feel obliged to sound the alarm bells," he added.