Holcomb in World Championship Medal Hunt

Feb. 21, 2009, 6 p.m. (ET)

Contact: Amanda Bird, USBSF Marketing & Communications Manager

(518) 523-1842, ext 106, abird@usbsf.com


For Immediate Release

February 21, 2009


Holcomb in World Championship Medal Hunt


Lake Placid, N.Y.– Steven Holcomb (Park City, Utah) and brakeman Curt Tomasevicz (Shelby, Neb.) are in the men’s two-man bobsled World Championship medal hunt, currently sitting in fourth after the first two heats today.  Thirty-two sleds entered the four-heat competition to vie for the title at the Olympic Sports Complex in Lake Placid, N.Y.


“Anything can happen tomorrow,” said Holcomb.  “I felt pretty good today, but I know we can do better.  This track is unpredictable, so who knows what will happen.  I’m hopeful.”


Team Holcomb pushed a start time of 5.16 seconds in the first heat, crossing the finish line with the third fastest time of the first heat, 55.64 seconds. Holcomb and Tomasevicz bettered their push by one-hundredth of a second in the second heat, but fell into fourth with a run of 55.76 seconds.


“Unfortunately, I had a bad second run,” said Holcomb.  “I fell out of the top three, but there are still two runs to go.  This track is hard to be consistent on, which we saw in the women’s race this morning.”


The 2007 World Cup champions enter the final two heats tomorrow in fourth position, only three-hundredths from the medals with a two-run total of one minute, 51.40 seconds. 


Ivo Rueegg and Cedric Grand from Switzerland currently hold the lead by a mere six-hundredths of a second with a total time of 1:51.12 after sliding identical runs of 55.56 seconds.  Germans Thomas Florshutz and Marc Kuehne are in second after sliding runs of 55.50 and 55.68 for a two-run total of 1:51.18, while Russians Alexsandr Zubkov and Alexey Voevoda are sitting in third after crossing the finish line in 55.58 and 55.79 seconds for a total time of 1:51.37. 


Todd Hays (Del Rio, Texas) and teammate Alex Sprague (Indianapolis, Ind.) finished the first day of competition in 15th position with a total time of 1:52.39.  Hays and Sprague pushed start times of 5.20 and 5.22 for runs of 56.13 and 56.26, respectively. 


“My runs weren’t great,” said Hays.  “You need to have near perfect runs to be in the top three today.  I’m not really happy, but hopefully tomorrow I can just let it go and find some speed.  I have nothing to lose at this point.”


Young 22 year old driver John Napier (Lake Placid, N.Y.) has been recovering from the flu this week, and struggled today to find energy.  Napier teamed with T.J. Burns (Blue Bell, Pa.) for a total time of 1:52.55 after sliding runs of 56.28 and 56.27, placing the U.S. pair in 18th.


“All I did this week was rest and sleep so I could get to this point,” said Napier.  “It was a struggle today to get my energy up, and I’m definitely still not feeling well.  I hope it will be better tomorrow, and I plan on catching up with the field.”


The men’s two-man bobsled World Championship competition will conclude tomorrow at 8:30 am EST.  For photos of the U.S. men in action, visit the web site of photographer Todd Bissonette at www.usabobsledphotos.com. 


Complete results can be found by visiting the web site for the Federation Internationale de Bobsleigh et de Tobogganing at www.fibt.com.  For additional information, please contact Amanda Bird, USBSF Marketing & Communications Manager, at (518) 523-1842, ext. 106, or abird@usbsf.com. 



1. Ivo Rueegg and Cedric Grand (SUI) 1:51.12 (55.56, 55.56); 2. Thomas Florschutz and Marc Kuehne (GER) 1:51.18 (55.50, 55.68); 3. Alexsandr Zubkov and Alexey Voevoda (RUS) 1:51.37 (55.58, 55.79); 4. Steven Holcomb and Curt Tomasevicz (USA) 1:51.40 (55.64, 55.76);…15. Todd Hays and Alex Sprague (USA) 1:52.39 (56.13, 56.26);…18. John Napier and T.J. Burns (USA) 1:52.55 (56.28, 56.27); 


About the U.S. Bobsled and Skeleton Federation

The United States Bobsled and Skeleton Federation, based in Lake Placid, N.Y., is the national governing body for the sports of bobsled and skeleton in the United States. The USBSF would like to thank its sponsors, suppliers and contributors for their support: Allianz Life, Vilter Manufacturing, KBC Helmets, Luminox Watch Company, ULU Boots and Ferris Mfg. Corp. The USBSF would also like to thank the following sponsors and suppliers for their partner, the Bo-Dyn Bobsled Project:  Whelen Engineering, PPG, Columbia Sportswear, JEGS Automotive, Lucas Oil, Mac Tools, EXA, Lumber Liquidators, Lincoln Electronics and Racing Electronics.  For more information, please visit the USBSF website at http://bobsled.teamusa.org.