Luge Canada

Canadian luge athlete Sam Edney smashes his previous best World Cup mark
-Teammate Jeff Christie joins Edney in to

Media AdvisorySam Edney, one of Canada's most talented young luge athletes, continued his steady rise in international competition after smashing his previous best World Cup result in men's singles on Saturday.

The 21-year-old Calgary native finished 14th overall at the third installment of the Veissmann Luge World Cup for the 2005-06 season.

"It destroys my previous career best, which was a 21st-place finish," said Edney, who up until recently competed in both the men's singles and doubles disciplines. "It was a great finish for me personally. Altenberg has always been a good track for me and I always feel confident going into races here."

Edney clocked in at 55.12 seconds, putting him in 10th place after the first heat, and 55.29 seconds on his second trip down the track for a combined total of 1:50.41.

After discussing the matter with former doubles partner Gwyn Lewis, Edney, now in his third year on the national senior squad, made the decision to concentrate solely on the men's singles sled for the remainder of this critical World Cup campaign.

"This year I had to make a decision on where to put most of my focus, so I've decided to just slide singles for the rest of the season," he said. "I think I have a better chance of going to the Olympics in singles, and it'll be great to focus my concentration on just one discipline."

Joining Edney in the top-20 in Altenberg was teammate Jeff Christie. The 22-year-old Vancouver native tied for 19th spot with Germany's Denis Bertz, with both sliders trekking down the track in a two-heat combined time of 1:50.79. Meanwhile, Jorgen Krause, a 23-year-old native of Didsbury, Alta., slid into 28th spot overall with a time of 1:51.99.

Continuing his mastery of the Altenberg track was Austrian competitor Markus Kleinheinz, who slid to his third career gold medal there with a two-run combined time of 1:48.82. American Tony Benshoof, who won the bronze at last week's World Cup race in Cesana Pariol, Italy, slid up the ranks to claim the silver medal with a two-heat total of 1:48.84. Germany's David Moller recorded 1:49.27 to win bronze.

The Veissmann Luge World Cup continues tomorrow in Altenberg with the women's and doubles events.

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 on the Internet.

Men's Singles Top-Five Results: (31 Sleds)
1.Markus Kleinheinz, AUT, 1:48.82 2. Tony Benshoof, USA, 1:48.84; 3. David Moller, GER, 1:49.27; 4. Denis Geppert, GER, 1:49.46; 5. Albert Demtschenko, RUS, 1:49.52.

Canadian Men's Results:
14. Sam Edney, Calgary, 1:50.41; 19. Jeff Christie, Vancouver, 1:50.79; 28. Jorgen Krause, Didsbury, Alta., 1:51.99.

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Chris Dornan
CODA, Communications Specialist
C: 403-585-0254