Canadians Show Depth of Young Luge Team With Seven Top-20 Results in One Night
-Jeff Christie and Regan Lauscher f
Canada's men's and women's singles luge competitors, the youngest in the world, showed the depth of their squad Saturday night by placing seven athletes in top-20 positions at the fourth stop of the Viessmann Luge World Cup in Salt Lake City, Utah.
"I had a great first run that had me sitting seventh and then made a few small errors in my second run," said Christie, who is in his first season dedicated to the senior World Cup. "I'll get my consistency where it needs to be, but I've proven to myself that when I put down two solid runs, I'll be up there in the top-ten with the best in the world."
All eight of Canada's singles athletes in men's and women's events made it into this World Cup race with strong results in the qualifying runs. Other men's results included Ian Cockerline of Calgary in 16th, Matt McMurray of Calgary in 18th, and Sam Edney of Calgary in 21st.
The women's side is also showing consistent results with three women under the age of 18 pushing for their spot among the world's best. Madison Dupuis of Calgary finished 16th tonight, followed by Regina's Meghan Simister in 18th place and Monica Gorham of Calgary in 20th spot. Regan Lauscher is leading that women's team as the veteran after returning to World Cup action last week in Calgary.
"It's a lot like riding a bike I guess, now that I'm back with the team it's just like old times," said Lauscher. "The competition is much better, even compared to last year and there is very little time separating a top-15 finish from a podium result. Its nice to be back traveling with the team and feeding off each other's energy."
The men's race was won by Italy's Reinhold Rainer who claims his first win of the season in a time of 1:32.345. He was followed by Dennis Geppert of Germany in second place (1:32.393) and Tony Benshoof of the United States in third (1:32.440).
Silke Kraushaar led a dominating German performance, sweeping the podium and taking the top-4 spots in the women's race. Kraushaar, who won her third race in four attempts, came down the track in a combined time of 1:28.853. Sylke Otto was next in second place in 1:28.985, and the final podium spot went to third place German Barbara Niedernhuber in 1:29.044.
The Canadian squad now travels to Lake Placid, USA, for another American venue on the Viessmann Luge World Cup, December 20-21, 2003.
MEN'S SINGLES RESULTS:
WOMEN'S SINGLES RESULTS:
The Canadian Luge Associaton is the governing body for luge racing in Canada. In partnership with CODA, the Canadian Luge Association operates the Olympic Luge Training Centre at Canada Olympic Park in Calgary, which develops our nation's high-performance luge athletes and promotes the sport across the country. For more information on the Canadian Luge Association, please visit us at www.luge.ca on the Internet.