FIL World Luge Championships 2009

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Official logo for the FIL World Luge Championships 2009 that is also used for the FIBT World Championships 2009.

The FIL World Luge Championships 2009 ran on 1–8 February 2009 at the bobsleigh, luge, and skeleton track in Lake Placid, New York, United States for the second time after having hosted the event in 1983. They were awarded the event at the 2006 FIL Congress in Berchtesgaden, Germany.[1]

Event preparations[edit]

In a September 17, 2008 interview with FIL, FIL Vice President for Sport Claire DelNegro stated that preparations proceeding well. DelNegro, a former director of the United States Bobsled and Skeleton Federation (headquartered in Lake Placid), stated that she hoped that "...these championships will be a real challenge for all participating nations."[2] A "Scholastic Sliding Challenge" (SSC) organized by the Olympic Regional Development Authority, the Lake Placid bobsleigh, luge, and skeleton track operating authority, and included 22 schools in the Lake Placid area.[3] This program was a continuation of a program that was started at the 2007 World Championships in Igls, Austria that continued at last year's world Championships in Oberhof, Germany.[3] It was also used for the upcoming FIBT World Championships held later in February 2009 on the same track.[3] The track was iced down on October 6, 2008, the earliest it has ever been iced in preparation for both the FIBT and FIL championships.[4] Opening ceremonies took place on 6 February 2009.[5]

Television coverage[edit]

Television coverage was provided by the German public TV station ARD as part of their shows on the 7th and the 8th.[6] Eurosport provided live coverage both of the women's singles event on the 6th and of the men's singles on the 7th.[6] Coverage was seen in the United States and Canada on demand with Universal Sports.[7]

Participating countries[edit]

As of 21 November 2008, 21 countries agreed to participate in the event. These included the host United States, Germany, Austria, Russia, Czech Republic, Moldova, Italy, Romania, Norway, and Venezuela.[8]

Luge World Cup leaders[edit]

As of 2 February 2009, the leaders of the 2008-09 Luge World Cup[9] were as follows:

Discipline Leader Second Third
Men's singles  Armin Zöggeler (ITA)  David Möller (GER)  Jan Eichhorn (GER)
Women's singles  Tatjana Hüfner (GER)  Natalie Geisenberger (GER)  Anke Wischnewski (GER)
Men's doubles  Italy (Christian Oberstolz & Patrick Gruber)  Germany (Patric Leitner & Alexander Resch)  Austria (Andreas Linger & Wolfgang Linger)
Team relay  Germany  Italy  Austria

Jury and technical delegates[edit]

The jury was chaired by Switzerland's Joseph Benz with other members being America's John Mowry and Austria's Markus Schmidt.[10] Technical delegates were headed by Latvia's Einars Fogelis with other members being Slovakia's Walter Marx and Norway's Bjoern Drydahl.[10]

Men's singles[edit]

7 February 2009. Run 1 took place 12:15 - 13:55 North American EST (17:15 - 18:55 UTC) while Run 2 took place 14:30 - 15:25 EST (19:30 - 20:25 UTC).[11]

Medal Athlete Time
Gold  Felix Loch (GER) 1:44.336
Silver  Armin Zöggeler (ITA) +0.213
Bronze  Daniel Pfister (AUT) +0.701

Loch repeats as world champion, setting the track record on the first run. Pfister earned his first individual medal at the championships.[12]

Women's singles[edit]

6 February 2009. Run 1 took place 13:00 - 14:20 EST (18:00 - 19:20 UTC) while Run 2 took place 14:45 - 15:30 EST (19:45 - 20:30 UTC).[11]

Medal Athlete Time
Gold  Erin Hamlin (USA) 1:28.098
Silver  Natalie Geisenberger (GER) +0.187
Bronze  Natalia Yakushenko (UKR) +0.236

Hamlin set the track record in the second run to become the first non-European and the first American to medal in the women's singles luge event at the Winter Olympic or world championship level. Yakushenko is the first Ukrainian to medal at the championships. Two-time defending world champion Tatjana Hüfner of Germany finished sixth despite setting the start record during the second run. This was the first time a German did not win this event at a World Cup, Winter Olympic, world championship, or European championships since 1997 and the first time in the Winter Olympics, world, or European level since Italy's Gerda Weissensteiner won the women's singles gold medal at the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer.[13]

Doubles[edit]

6 February 2009. Run 1 took place 10:00 - 10:50 EST (15:00 - 15:50 UTC) while Run 2 will take place 11:20 - 11:55 EST (16:20 - 16:55 UTC).[11]

Medal Athlete Time
Gold  Italy (Gerhard Plankensteiner, Oswald Haselrieder) 1:27.401
Silver  Germany (André Florschütz, Torsten Wustlich) +0.057
Bronze  United States (Mark Grimmette, Brian Martin) +0.210

The Italians won their first ever championships. Florschütz and Wustlich only trailed Plankensteiner and Haselrieder by 0.008 seconds after the first run. Martin and Grimette won their fifth doubles bronze medal.[14]

Mixed team relay[edit]

8 February 2009 from 11:00 to 12:00 EST (16:00 to 17:00 UTC).[11]

Medal Team Time
Gold  Germany (Felix Loch, Natalie Geisenberger, André Florschütz, Torsten Wustlich) 2:39.630
Silver  Austria (Daniel Pfister, Nina Reithmeyer, Peter Penz, Georg Fischler) +1.510
Bronze  Latvia (Guntis Rēķis, Maija Tīruma, Andris Šics, Juris Šics) +2.869

Loch won his second gold of the championships.[15]

Medal table[edit]

 Rank  Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
1  Germany 2 2 0 4
2  Italy 1 1 0 2
3  United States 1 0 1 2
4  Austria 0 1 1 2
5  Ukraine 0 0 1 1
6  Latvia 0 0 1 1

References[edit]

  1. ^ 54th FIL Congress in Berchtesgaden. at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (30 June 2006 article accessed 13 February 2008.)
  2. ^ Preparations for FIL World Championships in Lake Placid according to plan at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (17 September 2008 article accessed 19 September 2008.)
  3. ^ a b c School project also at FIL World Championships in Lake Placid. at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (26 September 2008 article accessed 3 October 2008.)
  4. ^ 41st FIL World Championships in Lake Placid. at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (6 October 2008 article accessed 17 October 2008.)
  5. ^ FIL World Luge Championships 2009 schedule - accessed 21 November 2008. (now deadlinked)
  6. ^ a b Eurosport offers extensive coverage. at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (2 February 2009 article accessed 2 February 2009.)
  7. ^ UniversalSports.com website. - accessed 2 February 2009. (Link delinked.)
  8. ^ List of participating countries for the championships. - accessed November 21, 2008. (Site delinked.)
  9. ^ Links to current Luge World Cup leaders. - accessed 2 February 2009.
  10. ^ a b Sepp Benz chairperson of the jury at the Worlds. at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (2 February 2009 article accessed 2 February 2009.)
  11. ^ a b c d 2009 championships schedule - accessed 21 November 2008 (site delinked).
  12. ^ FIL Luge World Championships in Lake Placid (USA) - Felix Loch (GER) defends his World title. at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (7 February 2009 article accessed 7 February 2009.)
  13. ^ Erin Hamlin writes Luge History. at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (6 February 2009 article accessed 7 February 2009.)
  14. ^ First World title for Plankensteiner/ Haselrieder (ITA). at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (6 February 2009 article accessed 7 February 2009.)
  15. ^ Germany wins Team Relay at the Worlds. at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (8 February 2009 article accessed 8 February 2009.)