|Birth Date:||November 6, 1957|
Canada's high-performance luge athletes have a new weapon heading into the next Olympic cycle, thanks to the recruitment of German Olympic and World Champion, Bernhard Glass, as assistant coach of the World Cup team.
Glass, who has collected Olympic and World Championship gold medals both as an athlete and coach of the world-dominant German Luge Team, reunites with countryman Wolfgang Staudinger on the road to leading Canada to its first Olympic medal in the sport.
The Canadian luge program has made significant progress under the leadership of Wolfgang Staudinger, to where we are now regular contenders with the world's elite, said Tim Farstad, executive director, Canadian Luge Association. Adding Bernhard to our world-leading mix of coaches will close the gap between where we stand today and reaching our goal of climbing onto the podium with the leading nations in our sport.
As an athlete, the now 43-year-old Glass was a mainstay on the international podium during his 13-year career, and captured Olympic and World Championship gold in men's singles luge during the 1980 season. Glass was even more successful as a coach, developing more than one dozen athletes who went on to become Olympic medallists - including Silke Krausshaar, Tatjana Huefner, David Moeller, Andre Florschuetz, and Torsten Wustlich in luge; and many lugers who found success in bobsleigh, including legends in the sport Andre Lange, Sandra Kiriasis, and Claudia Schramm.
Medals in luge are won and lost in thousandths of a second; that time can be made up through sled technology, proper sled set-up, and plain old track experience, said Farstad. The Germans have dominated the sport thanks to their access and expertise in technology and knowledge of the tracks for decades. The recruitment of a winning coaching staff like Glass and Staudinger is a key component within our strategy of building the Canadian program so we too can climb onto the international podium.
Since Staudinger was hired in 2007, Canada's luge athletes have become regular contenders in international competition with consistent top-15 finishes and numerous World Cup team podium finishes in addition to posting a record-setting Olympic performance in 2010.
Ongoing funding from Own the Podium has supported the Canadian Luge Association's coaching recruitment.
|Feb. 23|| Olympics||1|