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CANADIAN WOMEN SLIDE INTO TOP-15 ON HOME TRACK AT VIESSMANN LUGE WORLD CUP IN CALGARY

Germans sweep podium en route to 75th consecutive World Cup victoryCALGARY—Canadas top women luge athletes, Regan Lauscher and Meaghan Simister, stood their ground with the worlds best after sliding into the top-15 in the second stop of the 2007 Viessmann Luge World Cup in Calgary on Friday night.

Regan Lauscher led the way for the female Canucks after posting a ninth-place result with a two-run time of one minute 35.154 seconds. The 27-year-old Red Deer, Alta. native, who sat in 11th spot after the opening heat, climbed her way into the top-10 after an aggressive second run where she carried her speed into the bottom, flatter part of the track.

Overall, I am satisfied with my performance today, said Lauscher who is making a full-time comeback to the World Cup circuit after racing a condensed season last year which ended early with an injury. Im always looking for two consistent runs and it is coming. We are only two races into year one of a three-year plan, which ends in 2010, so I keep telling myself there is a bigger picture and I know Im on track.

Lauschers teammate, Meaghan Simister, also powered her way into the top-15 on Friday. Fresh off her 21st birthday, the Regina native was poised to post her best-ever World Cup finish after an explosive start and solid opening run. Simister, whose best-ever finish on the World Cup is 11th place, settled for 15th spot (1:35.678) under mild and calm weather conditions at Canada Olympic Park in Calgary.

My starts were strong and I slid the top of the track very consistent in both runs, said Simister, who is one of the fastest starters on the international circuit. I just lost some speed down near the bottom of the track which cost me some time, but overall I have to be happy with today.

Meanwhile, the German women continued their dominance of the Viessmann Luge World Cup, winning their 75th consecutive title, and their second straight sweep of the podium. Tatjana Hqfner defended her title on the Calgary track after posting the time to beat at 1:33.910. Hqfners teammate, Silke Kraushaar-Pielach, was second at 1:33.928, while Natalie Geisenberger was rounded out the podium after clocking a time of 1:34.029.

The Viessmann Luge World Cup continues on Saturday in Calgary with the mens singles and doubles races beginning at 3 p.m.

The Canadian Luge Association is the governing body for luge racing in Canada. The Canadian Luge Association operates the Olympic Luge Training Centre at Canada Olympic Park in Calgary, which develops our nations 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.

COMPLETE RESULTS: www.fil-luge.org
Womens Singles Top-Five Results:
1. Tatjana Hqfner, GER, 1:33.910; 2. Silke Kraushaar-Pielach, GER, 1:33.928; 3. Natalie Geisenberger, GER, 1:34.029; 4. Anke Wischnewski, GER, 1:34.601; 5. Veronika Halder, AUT, 1:34.728.

Canadian Women Results:
9. Regan Lauscher, Red Deer, Alta., 1:35.154; 15. Meaghan Simister, Regina, 1:35.678.

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FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Chris Dornan
Media and Public Relations
Canadian Luge Association
T: 403-470-9546
E-mail: pqbeana@pbqn.pn