Luge Canada


Tristan Walker and Justin Snith win bronze medals at World Junior Championships in JapanCanada's Alex Gough hit another milestone in her quest for the international podium after posting her career-best World Cup result, finishing sixth on her home track in Calgary on Friday evening.

The 21-year-old Gough, who made history last week when she posted the best-ever result for a Canadian at the World Championships when she finished fourth, clocked a two-run time of one minute 35.622 seconds.

I am a little disappointed because I didn't slide the top section very well, but of course I have to be happy because that was my best World Cup result, said Gough at the finish dock. The mantra is to have two consistent runs, and that is what I try to do every week.

The Calgarian's breakthrough season has included six top-10 finishes. Gough's previous best result this year on the World Cup was seventh which she accomplished twice.

I do really believe now that if I have those consistent runs that I can be in that elite group with the top-six, said Gough sporting a FOR SALE sign flashing on her race helmet, which the entire Canadian squad is wearing during the World Cup races over the next two weeks in hopes of finding a corporate partner. My starts are my biggest disadvantage, but I am now competitive and need to keep working on improving them if I want to get on the podium.

While the 2006 Olympian finished only fractions of a second off the gold-medal time of 1:35.178 set by Tatjana Hüfner, of Germany, it remains a long journey in the eyes of a luge athlete.

The two other podium finishers on Friday included Germany's Natalie Geisenberger, who captured the silver medal with a time of 1:35.366, while Austria's Veronika Halder prevented the Germany sweep of the medals by finishing third (1:35.386).

Three other Canadians ploughed through the heavy snow falling down on the 14-corner track under the lights at Canada Olympic Park. Regan Lauscher, of Red Deer, Alta., was 12th at 1:36.232, while Calgary's Meaghan Simister finished in 18th (1:37.017). Canada's 16-year-old Kimberly McRae finished in 20th spot in her first World Cup race after clocking-in at 1:37.269.

Meanwhile, Canada's Tristan Walker and Justin Snith teamed up to win a bronze medal at the Junior Luge World Championships in Nagano, Japan. Walker and Snith, who were regular medal contenders all season, were joined on the podium by two German teams.

Nico Walthe and Nico Grünneker took the crown as the top junior doubles team for 2009. The German tandem edged out their teammates, Daniel Rothamel and Chris Rohemis, who were forced to settle for the silver medal.

The I Love Luge World Cup continues in Calgary on Saturday with the men's 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 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.

Women's Top-Five Results:
1. Tatjana Hüfner, GER, 1:35.178; 2. Natalie Geisenberger, GER, 1:35.366; 3. Veronika Halder, AUT, 1:35.386; 4. Anke Wischnewski, GER, 1:35.402; 5. Nina Reithmayer, AUT, 1:35.505.

Other Canadian Results:
6. Alex Gough, Calgary, 1:35.622; 12. Regan Lauscher, Red Deer, Alta., 1:36.232; 18. Meaghan Simister, Calgary, 1:37.017; 20. Kimberly McRae, Calgary, 1:37.269.