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There is a big number of competition judges working during the 52nd Nordic Ski World Championships to guarantee fair decision-making. Three of them are Otto Nehauser, Herbert Kury and Konrad Liegl who all have lots of experience. They are all members of the local sports club in Scharnitz and have been supporting the Skiclub Seefeld for a long time in various sports events.
Otto Neuhauser has the most experience and was already working at the Olympic Games in 1964. As part of the track preparation team he was partly in charge of ensuring the perfect condition of the cross-country tracks. In the 80s he decided to become a judge in Nordic disciplines. His first official competition was the Nordic Ski World Championships 1985 in Seefeld as control on the tracks.
Since the early 80s Neuhauser and his friend Herbert Kury were working as judges. He remembers the exciting times from the early days in which a lot of handiwork was still necessary. Nowadays, most of the timing is done automatically. Kury remembers that he had to take the intermediate times of athletes such as Gunde Svan by using a stop watch. Given the top performances of these athletes, it wasn’t an easy task.
The third of this trio, Konrad Liegl, has been helping the Skiclub Seefeld since 1976. Back then, he was a control post on the tracks and a judge during the World Championships in 1985. He also has fond memories of the beginning years. Once he starts talking he also remembers that there were hardly any barriers that separated the athletes from the fans. Spectators were allowed to position themselves along the track and as a judge you were obliged to take care that no sportsman was restrained.
Now, the three veterans are back again as judges during the World Championships 2019. The job title remains the same but the tasks have changed considerably in the last decades. On one hand, there are only a few judges necessary in the start area due to optical time measurement, on the other hand TV producers and photographers are happy that there are fewer people in this area to keep the focus on the athletes.
Otto Neuhauser, Herbert Kury and Konrad Liegl still love their work although there have been many changes. They are happy to be part of the World Championships and will also be ready to help the Skiclub Seefeld in the future.