Thursday, December 12, 2019

Bobsled & Skeleton World Cup Returning to Mt. Van Ho

IBSF World Cup Bobsled & Skeleton 2016Jacqueline Lölling (GER, women’s skeleton), Kaillie Humphries (USA, 2-woman bobsleigh), Axel Jungk (GER, men’s skeleton) and Johannes Lochner and Francesco Friedrich (GER, 2-man bobsleigh) have won the first races in the 2019/2020 BMW IBSF World Cup season.

They will all be reappearing at the second World Cup race of the winter on the ice in Lake Placid. The only change is that the male bobsleigh athletes will be switching to the larger sleighs: After two 2-man bobsleigh races were held at the season opener, two 4-man bobsleigh races are scheduled for the second weekend.

At the first races of the season, experienced skeleton athletes had to ward off attacks from the new kids on the block: In the men’s event, the Junior World Champion Felix Keisinger (GER) led the field after the first heat, also setting a new track record in Lake Placid. Youth Olympic Champion Evgeniy Rukosuev of Russia started out in fifth place. In the women’s skeleton, Junior World Champion Anna Fernstädtová – competing for the Czech Republic for the first time in the World Cup – was in fifth place after the first heat, so within reach of the podium. With Jacqueline Lölling (GER) taking first place, the 22-year-old ended up finishing in seventh.

The situation was similar in the 2-woman bobsleigh. While the winner of the opening race, the 2010 and 2014 Olympic Champion Kaillie Humphries is not a new face, she was competing for a new team, having raced for Team USA since the start of a season. However, after the World Championship silver medallist Stephanie Schneider in second, there was one spot left on the podium for one of the youngest teams in the field: U23 World Champion Kim Kalicki finished third in Lake Placid.

In the two 2-man bobsleigh races, it was local hero Hunter Church who demonstrated the most potential. The 23-year-old was second at the mid-way point of the first race, and third at the same point in the second race. He ended up in fifth place in both races. As well as the winner of the opening race Johannes Lochner (GER), he was beaten to the podium by both Olympic Champions Francesco Friedrich (GER) and Justin Kripps (CAN).

Upcoming schedule includes:

Friday, Dec. 13
10 am: Women’s skeleton heat #1
11:30 am: Women’s skeleton heat #2
2 pm: Men’s skeleton heat #1
3:45 pm: Men’s skeleton heat #2

Saturday, Dec. 14
10 am: Four-man bobsled heat #1
11:45 am: Four-man bobsled heat #2
2 pm: Women’s bobsled heat #1
3:45 pm: Women’s bobsled heat #2

Sunday, Dec. 15
10 am: Four-man bobsled heat #1
11:45 am: Four-man bobsled heat #2

More information is available online.

Photo of 2016 IBSF World Cup Bobsled & Skeleton provided by ORDA.

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