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Blaser in 21st position after day one of men’s skeleton 2022 Olympic Winter Games competition
Andrew Blaser during a training run on the 2022 Olympic track
Photo credit: Viesturs Lacis/IBSF
YANQING, China (February 10, 2022) – Andrew Blaser (Meridian, Idaho) is in 21st position after the first two heats of the men’s skeleton competition at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games today. It was Blaser’s Olympic debut, and he said “the win is definitely getting here.”
When he woke up this morning, just hours before his Olympic debut, he thought to himself, “holy crap, you’re going to the Olympics.”
“The opportunity to be here happens, for a lot of people, once in their life,” Blaser said. “When you look at the last nine years to get here, the 70 hour work weeks and training and getting up at the break of dawn and doing all of those things– to me, that’s what made me an Olympian. It wasn’t winning a medal here. It wasn’t ever competing here. It was what it took to compete here. There’s so much more to it than the four minutes of racing. There’s four years of tears and blood and sweat and a lot more tears, hitting walls, and the tenacity and the grind, it never stops for us.”
Blaser has been chasing a sub 62-second downtime throughout training, and he posted his personal best finish time of 1:01.80 in today’s opening heat. Between heats, Blaser was able to chat with his family, who were watching a live stream stateside.
“They are all at my parents’ house for my mom’s birthday, and I don’t know if she got to hear it on the broadcast, but happy birthday, mom,” Blaser said. “I got to Facetime them all and see my nieces and nephews, and they’re all wearing shirts with my face on it.”
Like most athletes in the field, Blaser was slightly slower in the second heat with a run of 1:02.08. Blaser clocked start times of 4.81 and 4.85, 14th and 17th of the field, respectively.
“Every run is an opportunity to learn something more,” Blaser said. “I haven’t been able to really nail Curve 10 and it’s causing some issues for me a little further down in the Spiral, and hopefully we can get it tomorrow and really attack tomorrow’s first run and have a better outcome.”
Germany’s Christopher Grotheer leads after the first day with a combined time of 2:00.33. Grotheer set a new track record of 1:00.00 in the first run, and leads by a large margin of 0.70 seconds. His teammate, Axel Jungk is currently in second place with a two-run total of 2:01.03. Jungk and Grotheer finished the World Cup season ranked second and third, respectively, behind only Latvian Martins Dukurs, who is currently in sixth place. Wengang Yan of China is in medal position with a total of 2:01.08. Yan’s best World Cup finish was eighth place in November 2021.
The final two runs of the men’s skeleton Olympic competition will take place on February 11 at 8:20 p.m. local time, 7:20 a.m. EST.
NBCOlympics.com and NBC Sports app will live stream a Winter Olympics record 2,100+ hours of live event competition during the Beijing Olympics. NBC, USA Network, and CNBC will be live throughout the 2022 Winter Olympics. On the West coast, Prime West will air between Primetime and Prime Plus. For the latest comprehensive Olympic TV schedule information, please visit https://www.nbcolympics.com/schedule. Peacock will be the streaming home of the 2022 Winter Olympics, offering live streaming coverage and full replays of every event of the XXIV Olympic Winter Games on the service’s premium tier. Visit PeacockTV.com for more details.
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Results (day one)
1. Christopher Grotheer (GER) 2:00.33 (1:00.00, 1:00.33);
2. Axel Jungk (GER) 2:01.03 (1:00.50, 1:00.53);
3. Wengang Yan (CHN) 2:01.08 (1:00.43, 1:00.65);
21. Andrew Blaser (USA) 2:03.88 (1:01.80, 1:02.08)
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. For more information, please visit the USABS website at www.usabs.com. Individuals interested in becoming a bobsled or skeleton athlete can visit www.usabobsledskeleton.com.