Contact: Amanda Bird, USABS Marketing & Communications Director
(518) 354-2250, amanda.bird@usabs.com
Kristen Gowdy, USABS Media and Marketing Assistant, (719) 722-0522, kristen.gowdy@usabs.com

USA Bobsled collects three medals in today’s Lake Placid World Cup

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. (Dec. 16, 2016)- The USA Bobsled Team followed up Matt Antoine’s silver medal performance from this morning’s men’s skeleton competition with three medals this afternoon at Mount Van Hoevenberg. Steven Holcomb (Park City, Utah) teamed with Sam McGuffie (Cypress, Texas) to win the men’s two-man bobsled race by 0.27 seconds. Jamie Greubel Poser (Newtown, Pa.) and Aja Evans (Chicago, Ill.) shattered the track record en route to a victory in the women’s race, followed by Elana Meyers Taylor (Douglasville, Ga.) and Lolo Jones (Des Moines, Iowa) in second place.

“I’m elated,” said Brian Shimer, USA Bobsled head coach. “It was awesome for our fans, friends and family to be here and take part in our success today. Richard Laubenstein, our crew chief, certainly has these BMW sleds dialed in and he put it all out there for the athletes. It feels great seeing the team back on the podium, and I’m looking forward to seeing what these athletes bring to the table the rest of this season.”

In the men’s race, Holcomb and McGuffie powered the Under Armour wrapped BMW sled off the start block in 5.21 seconds, and Holcomb piloted the crew to a downtime of 54.66 seconds, just 0.05 seconds from the 13-year record, to place them in the lead.

“I had no idea [about being so close to the track record],” Holcomb said. “I thought I was going to be rather slow. I never thought we'd be this close to the two-man track record. It was set in 2003 in -38 degree weather by an incredible driver. To be even close to that is great.”

Holcomb, who was victorious in last season’s Lake Placid two-man race with Carlo Valdes, drove himself to gold again today. The three-time Olympic medalist and McGuffie powered to the finish in 54.81 for a combined time of 1:49.47 to take the win by 0.27 seconds.

“Every single person out here wanted to win today,” Holcomb said. “To have a victory, to be on top, no matter where it is, it's nice; just getting back to that mentality of winning again. It is a mentality. Putting together two runs. These cold conditions make the ice very hard and very slippery. Being the veteran on the tour, my experience paid off today.”

Canadians Justin Kripps and Jesse Lumsden claimed silver in 1:49.74, while their teammates Chris Spring and Lascelles Brown were third in 1:49.75.

Justin Olsen (San Antonio, Texas), competing in only his third World Cup as a pilot, raced with Evan Weinstock (Las Vegas, Nev.) today. The pair was only 0.13 seconds behind Holcomb and McGuffie in second position with a first run of 54.79 seconds after a push of 5.09. Olsen was a member of Holcomb’s gold medal winning team at the 2010 Olympics, and said his experience in Holcomb’s sled helped him develop as s driver.

“The biggest thing I took from Steve was how it should feel going down the track,” Olsen said. “If I can make it feel like that, we're good.”

Olsen and Weinstock bettered their start in run two with a time of 5.07, before Olsen, still a novice driver, struggled through some of the trickier portions of the technical track. The pair dropped to eighth with a two-run total of 1:50.08.

"I'm going to be frustrated with mistakes, but I'm still happy with how we raced,” Olsen said. “We want to start the fastest every race and give ourselves a chance because we're going against the best in the world. 

“We hit the wall before the first curve. I made a joke about that before the race, I said 'If you hit the wall before the first curve, pack your bags and go home.' I was actually confused because I don't know what we did.”

Hometown competitor Codie Bascue (Whitehall, N.Y.) teamed with Adrian Adams (Reidsville, N.C.) for 10th place with a combined time of 1:50.15. Bascue and Adams clocked a start of 5.17 for a run of 55.11 in the first heat, and ran 5.22 in run two for a time of 55.04.

In the women’s race, Greubel Poser teamed with her 2014 Olympic bronze medal teammate Evans in the KOA wrapped BMW sled to destroy the track record by 0.47 seconds with a run of 55.81. Meyers Taylor and Cherrelle Garrett set the former record of 56.28 in a World Cup race held December 13, 2014.

"We were so excited to see that time when we crossed the finish line. I was screaming, we were just so excited to know that we went that fast. We literally gave everything we had at the top.”

Greubel Poser and Evans followed up in the second heat with a run of 56.21 to maintain their lead, winning the race by 0.14 seconds with a combined time of 1:52.02. The duo also posted the fastest start times of the competition, 5.44 and 5.46 seconds, to dominate today’s race.

“This is our home track, so that's definitely our goal [to all finish on the podium] when we're here, but it's awesome to make it happen,” Greubel Poser said. “We're excited to do it on race day."

Meyers Taylor recovered from her crash in Whistler to claim silver with Olympic track star Jones in the BMW branded and made sled. The duo was second fastest at the start, 5.48, for a first run of 55.81 seconds. Meyers Taylor and Jones matched their start time in heat two, and the two-time Olympic medalist piloted the team to the finish in 56.21 seconds, tying for the fastest time of run two with her teammate Greubel Poser. Meyers Taylor and Jones finished just 0.14 seconds off the pace for silver in 1:52.16.

"Really happy with this silver medal,” Meyers Taylor said. “The ice was a lot faster, a lot more accelerated. Coming off last week, I was a little nervous. Lolo did a good job, she was in the hospital last night and came through. We're really happy with the silver medal.”

“It's awesome, Jamie did a great job, and they pushed really well. It just shows how strong Team USA is."

Reigning Olympic champion Kaillie Humphries teamed with Cynthia Appiah for third place with a total time of 1:53.05.

Brittany Reinbolt (Searcy, Ark.) made an impression on the international field today after finishing fourth with Lauren Gibbs (Los Angeles, Calif.) with a two-run total of 1:53.33. Reinbolt and Gibbs combined forces for starts of 5.56 and 5.57 seconds, fourth best of the race, for runs of 56.81 and 56.72 seconds, respectively.

"I'm just super stoked to finish fourth behind the reigning Olympic gold, silver and bronze medalists,” Reinbolt said. “I've been waiting for this opportunity to compete on home ice with competitive teams, competitive equipment for a long time. It's awesome. Just seeing USA, three of us in the top four, it's a good day."

The action continues tomorrow with women’s skeleton at 8:30 a.m. EST and four-person bobsled at 11:15 a.m. EST. Watch live coverage of the final event of the Lake Placid World Cup at nbcsports.com/live.

For media inquiries, please contact Amanda Bird, USABS Marketing & Communications Director, at amanda.bird@usabs.com, or at (518) 354-2250.

Results

Men’s two-man bobsled

1. Steven Holcomb and Sam McGuffie (USA) 1:49.47 (54.66, 54.81);
2. Justin Kripps and Jesse Lumsden (CAN) 1:49.74 (54.87, 54.87);
3. Chris Spring and Lascelles Brown (CAN) 1:49.75 (54.80, 54.95);
8. Justin Olsen and Evan Weinstock (USA) 1:50.08 (54.79, 55.29);

10. Codie Bascue and Adrian Adams (USA) 1:50.15 (55.11, 55.04);

 

Women’s bobsled

1. Jamie Greubel Poser and Aja Evans (USA) 1:52.02 (55.81, 56.21);

2. Elana Meyers Taylor and Lolo Jones (USA) 1:52.16 (55.95, 56.21);

3. Kaillie Humphries and Cynthia Appiah (USA) 1:53.05 (56.40, 56.65);

4. Brittany Reinbolt and Lauren Gibbs (USA) 1:53.33 (56.81, 56.72);

 

About USA Bobsled & Skeleton
USA Bobsled & Skeleton (USABS), based in Lake Placid, N.Y., is the national governing body for the sports of bobsled and skeleton in the United States. USABS would like to thank its sponsors, suppliers and contributors for their support: BMW of North America, Under Armour, Kampgrounds of America, Thorne Research, Boomerang Carnets, Hudl, Tesa Tape, PVS International, Ferris Mfg. Corp, Stress Engineering, Machintek, deBotech and Carpenter. For more information, please visit the USABS website at www.usabs.com.

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