USA Luge Grabs Seven North American Championship Medals
Becky Wilczak (River Forest, IL) -- the 2000 Junior Women's World Championship bronze medalist -- finished seventh. Wilczak was clocked at 1:40.984.
USA Luge grabbed gold and bronze in the men's race. Tony Benshoof (White Bear Lake, MN), the 2000 Verizon U.S. National Champion, paced the field with the two fastest runs and a total time of 1:33.996. "It was a good win for me today. I had two pretty solid runs," added Benshoof. "I still have a lot of work to do and it's a long season ahead." Adam Heidt (Northport, NY/Lake Placid, NY), who raced to a fourth place result in the 2000 Inaugural Winter Goodwill Games, began his 2000-2001 campaign in the bronze medal position, racing to a two-tun time of 1:34.426.
Canada's Tyler Sietz won the silver, 1:34.403, Clay Ives (Lake Placid, NY) finished fourth, 1:34.549, while Nick Sullivan (Oakdale, MN) was 11th with a two-heat time of 1:35.904.
The U.S. doubles team of Mark Grimmette (Muskegeon, MI) and Brian Martin (Palo Alto, CA) raced to their first win of the season. The 1998 Olympic bronze, 2000 overall World Cup bronze, 2000 World Championship bronze and Inaugural Winter Goodwill Games gold medalists captured the doubles' title, posting a combined time of 1:31.290 on the 1988 Olympic track.
USA Luge's newest doubles team of three-time Olympian and 1998 Olympic silver medalist Chris Thorpe (Marquette, MI) and two-time Olympian Ives won the silver. The 2000 York International Start Champions raced to an overall time of 1:32.451. Canada's Chris Moffat and Eric Pothier finished third, 1:32.766.
Both USA Luge and Canadian sliders now prepare for the start of the eight-race World Cup season beginning November 20-26 in Sigulda, Latvia. The World Cup series concludes in Lake Placid, NY February 12-18, 2001, one week before the 15-event international racing season concludes with the World Championships – also in Calgary.
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