Contact: Amanda Bird, USBSF Marketing & Communications Manager
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Antoine in bronze medal position
LAKE PLACID, N.Y. (Feb. 24, 2012)–Matt Antoine (Prairie du Chien, Wisc.) is in bronze medal position after the first two heats of the men’s skeleton World Championship race. Fifteen friends and family members cheered as Antoine’s second run moved him into third and within striking distance of silver for tomorrow’s final.
“I think that [being in third] is better than being on the defensive,” Antoine said. “I know that there is still more time for me. I am confident and I am going to keep pushing tomorrow and keep improving. My family is here, and it’s great to have their support.”
Antoine started the contest in fourth position with a first run of 54.28 seconds. The veteran athlete was poised at the start before his second run, and he powered off the starting block in 4.94 seconds to set the pace for a smooth ride down the course. Antoine crossed the finish line in 55.04 seconds for a two-run total of 1:49.32 and waited in the leader’s box as Tomass Dukurs took his final run of the evening.
“I was a little disappointed in the first run,” Antoine said. “I made some mistakes in the middle of the run that cost me some speed, so I was a bit farther behind than I wanted to be. I was able to correct those on run two for sure.”
Dukurs could not match Antoine’s blazing second run and he fell back into fourth. The young American moved into bronze medal position and is within reach of silver. Martins Dukurs earned his nickname “Superman” after dominating the World Cup circuit, and he extended his supremacy with a lead of 0.69 seconds today. Germany’s Frank Rommel is currently second with a combined time of 1:48.83.
“I was able to pick a person off and move into third,” Antoine said. “It’s a four heat race, and as we saw with Katie today, you have to put down four solid runs and that is what I hope to do tomorrow.”
Uhlaender threaded together four consistent runs to claim the women’s skeleton title this morning. Antoine’s best World Championship finish to date was seventh in the 2011 race for the title in Koenigssee, Germany. The last time the men’s team medaled was in 2007 in St. Moritz, Switzlerland when Eric Bernotas and Zach Lund claimed silver and bronze, respectively, and it’s been 13 years since Jimmy Shea won the last crown for the U.S. men in Altenberg, Germany.
John Daly (Smithtown, N.Y.) inched his way into the top 10 after a disappointing first run. Daly had trouble down the course and clocked a first run of 54.66 seconds for 11th position. The veteran looked disappointed as he crossed the finish.
“The runs weren’t what I thought they were and I was surprised to see the time,” Daly said. “I don’t have an answer today.”
Daly laid down a run of 55.24 seconds in the second run to move up two positions. The 2010 Olympian’s two-run total of 1:49.90 puts him in ninth position going into the finals.
“Tomorrow I want to move up spots as much as possible,” Daly said. “I moved up a couple already. The more I move up the better.”
The action continues tomorrow morning with the men’s four-man bobsled event at 9 am, followed by men’s skeleton finals at 5 pm.
For media inquiries, please contact Amanda Bird, USBSF Marketing & Communications Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or at (518) 354-2250.
1. Martins Dukurs (LAT) 1:48.14 (53.77, 54.37); 2. Frank Rommel (GER) 1:48.83 (54.00, 54.83); 3. Matt Antoine (USA) 1:49.32 (54.28, 55.04);…9. John Daly (USA) 1:49.90 (54.66, 55.24);
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: BMW of North America, Under Armour, United States National Guard, Kampgrounds of America, National Strength and Conditioning Association, Vivat!, Global Forwarding, KBC Helmets, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, EDAS/Ripxx, UberSense, Tesa Tape and Ferris Mfg. Corp. For more information, please visit the USBSF website at http://bobsled.teamusa.org.