Blaser and Henry capture wins in third USA Skeleton Team Trials race

Nov. 02, 2019, 4:10 p.m. (ET)

Contact: Amanda Bird, USABS Marketing & Communications Director
(518) 354-2250,
amanda.bird@usabs.com

 

Blaser and Henry capture wins in third USA Skeleton Team Trials race

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. (Nov. 2, 2019)Andrew Blaser (Meridian, Idaho) claimed his third consecutive win in the men’s USA Skeleton Team Trials competition, while Megan Henry (Roxbury, Conn.) pulled off an upset in the women’s field with her first win of trials. Challenging weather cancelled the last two days of training, but the track crew at Mount Van Hoevenberg in Lake Placid had the ice close to track record speeds today.

“It was really windy, but the track crew put it together,” said USA Skeleton Head Coach Tuffy Latour. “There were some interesting changes in placements today, and it may come down to the final run of the race series to determine the national team.”

Three World Cup quota spots are available for both the women’s and men’s teams. Austin Florian (Southington, Conn.) and Kendall Wesenberg (Modesto, Calif.) already have spots locked in thanks to their USA Skeleton National Championships wins, leaving two spots on both teams up for grabs.

Blaser entered today’s race with a solid lead of 432 points from winning the first two trials competitions. He was victorious today with a combined time of 1:47.95 after posting runs of 53.78 and 54.17 seconds.

Blaser has struggled with the Lake Placid track in the past, but luckily it’s become one of his favorites since last season. His home track in Park City, Utah was forced to cancel the second portion of trials due to a refrigeration problem.

“I spent some more time in Lake Placid last year and have been focusing on finding comfort in chaos this season,” Blaser said. “Things are constantly changing, and I think it’s been a benefit to have to face a little adversity early this season. Having confidence on the start line has been a very big benefit for me.”

Mike Rogals (Orwell, Vt.), who entered today ranked third in points, closed in on Blaser after finishing just 0.15 seconds from the lead with a two-run total of 1:48.10. Austin McCrary (Colleyville, Texas) had an impressive day with an aggregate time of 1:48.28 to finish third.

Alex Ivanov (Carlisle, Mass.), who was second overall in points, finished fourth today.

With just two spots up for grabs, Henry was eager to move up from her third place ranking after races one and two in the women’s field. She’s been the fastest women’s competitor in three of the six race runs during trials, but the veteran has struggled to find consistency.

“The biggest thing that I focused on for this week was consistency,” Henry said. “I struggled with that in curve 10 specifically last weekend. Even though they weren’t perfect runs, I just focused on thing at a time.”

Henry was in second place after a first heat time of 55.10 seconds, behind only Savannah Graybill (Denver, Pa.), who raced to the finish in a speedy 54.85 seconds.

“Today was awesome,” Henry said. “We knew the ice was going to be really nice. Savannah really set the tone for the women’s race.”

Excited by her teammate’s time, Henry blasted off the start in 5.21 seconds and navigated her way to the finish in 55.07 seconds to overtake the lead by a mere 0.03 seconds.

“I knew after last weekend that I was capable, it was just a matter of executing,” Henry said. “Tomorrow should be an equally close race, which is really exciting.”

Graybill has finished second in every team trials race this season and entered today ranked second. Thanks to double wins last weekend Katie Uhlaender (Breckenridge, Colo.) held the lead with 437 points compared to Graybill’s 390, but Uhlaender’s winning streak came to an end today with a third place finish. Uhlaender clocked a combined time of 1:50.75 to keep herself in the running for a national team spot.

USA Skeleton Team Trials will conclude tomorrow with the fourth and final race of the series at 10 a.m. EST.

Please direct media inquiries to the USABS Marketing and Communications Director Amanda Bird at amanda.bird@usabs.com.

USA Skeleton Team Trials race #3 results

 

Women
1. Megan Henry 1:50.17 (55.10, 55.07)
2. Savannah Graybill 1:50.20 (54.85, 55.35);
3. Katie Uhlaender 1:50.75 (55.21, 55.54);
4. Sara Roderick 1:50.85 (55.51, 55.34);
5. Kelly Curtis 1:51.74 (56.13, 55.61);
6. Mystique Ro 1:51.95 (55.59, 56.36);
7. Kristen Hurley 1:53.64 (56.37, 57.27);
8. Lauren McDonald 1:54.42 (57.16, 57.26);

 

Men

1. Andrew Blaser 1:47.95 (53.78, 54.17);
2. Mike Rogals 1:48.10 (53.76, 54.34);
3. Austin McCrary 1:48.28 (53.89, 54.39);
4. Alex Ivanov 1:48.65 (53.97, 54.68);
5. Daniel Barefoot 1:48.92 (54.12, 54.80);
6. Max Delance 1:49.74 (54.69, 55.05);
7. Steve Garbett 1:50.16 (55.60, 54.56);
8. Chris Strup 1:51.36 (55.39, 55.97);

 

 

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, BiPro, Boomerang Carnets, Hudl, Tesa Tape, PVS International, Machintek, deBotech and Carpenter. For more information, please visit the USABS website atwww.usabs.com.

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