The USA Luge team recently competed in World Cup action in Sigulda, Latvia over the weekend. And the WFG sponsored team earned a bronze medal in what was the season's first Suzuki Team Relay race. The team of male slider Bengt Walden, female slider Ashley Walden and doubles Mark Grimmette/Brian Martin earned third place with a total time of 2:20.032. Barely half a second separated the US from first place Austria and second place Germany.
In luge, a team relay race works kind of like a relay race in track and field. But instead of passing a baton, the first racer will access a touch pad to let down the gate for the next racer. Only when the touch pad is, well, touched, can the next team member begin their run. The clock stops only when the third team touches the pad, signifying the end of the race.
Also in Sigulda, the US men improved upon their performance from the previous event. Bengt improved from 21st to 15th place while teammate Toby Benshoof moved from 24th to 14th. All team members seek to improve on the next event this weekend in Winterberg, Germany. Coverage can be seen on Universal Sports and at www.universalsports.com.
In youth luge competition, Emily Sweeney placed ninth in a competition held in Konigssee, Germany. This marks her second consecutive top-10 finish for the season. Way to go team!