Klaus Jungbluth received yesterday the national pavilion that will fly at the Pyeongchang Winter Games. He will be the first and only representative of Ecuador in this event.
Klaus Jungbluth practiced lifting for 10 years. But what was at first pleasant entertainment became a nightmare. Weightlifting destroyed the cartilage of both knees, so he had to undergo two surgeries to avoid being forced to abandon the sport. Although he had difficult emotional times, it never occurred to Jungbluth to leave physical activity.
Staying active is a kind of need that your body demands. That is why, 4 years ago, he let himself be trapped by cross-country skiing. It happened while I was living in the Czech Republic, where I was studying physiotherapy. It started as a curiosity and then it became a routine.
Even when he returned to Ecuador he brought some skis for asphalt in order not to lose pace. And that persistence paid off in a short time. On October 14 of last year he became the first Ecuadorian to qualify for a Winter Olympic Games. Jungbluth will be the only representative of the country in Pyeongchang 2018. He will compete on February 16 in cross-country skiing 15 kilometers freestyle.
Yesterday, as a farewell, the Ecuadorian Olympic Committee (COE) gave him the national flag that will parade during the opening of the Games, scheduled for February 9. The tests will run until the 25th. The event, which was held in the remodeled auditorium of the COE, was attended by the president of the organization, Augusto Morán; and the Sports Minister, Andrea Sotomayor.
The road from Jungbluth (38 years) to Pyeongchang started in July 2016 and during that date until now it has intervened in 28 tests in countries of Europe, Oceania and South America. He also participated in the Nordic Ski World Championship last year in Finland. “It has been a long and hard road that we hope to close with a good participation and hopefully with a medal,” said Jungbluth. (I)