Kaillie Humphries

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Kaillie Humphries
Kaillie Humphries at Whistler.JPG
Kaillie Humphries in Vancouver 2010
Personal information
Nationality Canadian
Born (1985-09-04) September 4, 1985 (age 29)[1]
Calgary, Alberta
Residence Calgary, Alberta[1]
Height 1.68 m (5 ft 6 in)[1]
Weight 73 kg (161 lb; 11.5 st)[1]
Sport
Country  Canada
Sport Bobsleigh
Event(s) - 2-woman
- 4-man
- mixed team
Coached by Germany Stefan Bosch
Achievements and titles
Olympic finals 1st 1st

Kaillie Humphries (née Simundson) (born September 4, 1985) is a Canadian bobsledder. Humphries is the reigning Olympic champion in the two-woman at the 2010 Winter Olympics and the 2014 Winter Olympics. With her victory in 2014 she became the first female bobsledder to successfully defend her Olympic title. Due to her repeat championship she was named flagbearer for the closing ceremonies at the 2014 Games together with brakewoman Heather Moyse. Humphries is also the two-time defending overall World Cup champion.

Humphries along with Elana Meyers became the first women to pilot a mixed-gender team in the first ever international four-man bobsleigh competition to allow women to compete with/against men.[2] As of the end of the 2013-14 World Cup season, Humphries has won 28 Fédération Internationale de Bobsleigh et de Tobogganing (FIBT) World Cup medals, 7 FIBT World Championships medals, and 2 Olympic Games medals. Humphries received the prestigious 2014 Lou Marsh Award, given annually to Canada's top athlete.

Early years[edit]

Kallie did not start as a bobsledder but competed in alpine ski racing before the age of 16. After breaking both legs in separate crashes, she retired from the sport.[3] In 2002 Humphries began her bobsleigh career as a brakeman, and was an alternate to the Canadian team at the 2006 Olympic Winter Games in Torino.[4]

Career[edit]

In 2007, Humphries was placed low on the Canadian depth chart and did not feature at the 2006 Winter Olympics. In an effort to compete she considered representing the United Kingdom, the country of her then fiance, Dan Humphries. Opting to remain with the Canadian team she gained a spot on the roster after signing up for a bobsleigh driving school.[5] She won the silver medal in the mixed bobsleigh-skeleton team event at the 2008 FIBT World Championships in Altenberg, Germany.

Following a seventh place finish in 2009-10 Bobsleigh World Cup season series, Humphries ran well throughout the 2009-10 Bobsleigh World Cup season, finishing second overall with one win, two other podium finishes, and never less than a top six finish (in a field of 20) over the eight race season.[6]

Humphries 2009-10 World Cup season prepared her for the first prominent achievement of her career—winning the gold medal in the Two-woman competition at the 2010 Winter Olympics, with her 2009-10 brakeman Heather Moyse. The silver medal was won by fellow Canadians Shelley-Ann Brown and Helen Upperton. It marked the first time of the 2010 Olympics that Canadians had won two medals in one event.[7] The win completed a childhood dream for Humphries. After the final run she said that "I don't think I can put it into words yet, we did our job, you know. The goal I set as a little kid, to have done it, is amazing."[5]

After the 2010 Olympic win, Humphries met with less success on the World Cup tour and in World Championship competition for nearly two seasons. She only finished on the podium once during the 2010–11 World Cup season, though her consistent top-10 finishes allowed her to finish in third place for the overall season. Humphries slid to fifth place for the overall 2011–12 World Cup season, though she did have four podium finishes, including three gold medals, by the end of the season.

Humphries teamed up with brakeman Emily Baadsvik, then brakeman Jennifer Ciochetti, for the consecutive wins in the last two races of the 2011–12 World Cup season. Humphries and Ciochetti also won the 2012 World Championship race in Lake Placid, adding a World Championship to Humphries' Olympic Championship. This was also the first gold for any Canadian woman's sled team at the World Championships. When asked about what her result means on top of her Olympic gold she said that "It feels amazing. It is another goal accomplished. This means a lot to me. I feel like I'm still growing as a pilot and I try to learn from every experience. I have been working on my consistency and I'm glad it showed here."[8] In the team event, Humphries went on to help guide the Canadians to a bronze medal as well, adding to her medal tally that year.[9]

Humphries' three gold medals to finish the winter of 2011–12 was the start of a winning streak that would eventually break records for woman's bobsleigh competition.[10]

Competitive dominance[edit]

Humphries, with new brakeman Chelsea Valois, was the dominant pilot during the 2012–13 Bobsleigh World Cup season. The pair finished on the podium at all nine races that season, including a historic five straight wins from the start of the season.[10] They won the Overall Season Championship with a record 1,960 points on a season of six gold, a silver and two bronze medal finishes.

Humphries' success in the winter of 2012-13 included a repeat as World Champion, placing first while setting a track record at the 2013 FIBT World Championship race in St. Moritz.[11] This win meant that Humphries finished on the podium in all 10 FIBT races during 2012-13, while extending her consecutive FIBT podium finishes to 13 when counting the last two races of the 2011–12 World Cup Season plus the 2012 FIBT World Championship race.[10] This streak of 13 consecutive podiums over two seasons included a run of eight consecutive wins from the end of 2011–12 through the start of 2012–13, while teamed with three different brakemen (Baadsvik for one win, Ciochetti for two wins and Valois for six wins/ten podiums).[12]

The 2013-14 World Cup season saw Humphries reunited with her Vancouver 2010 teammate, Heather Moyse. Humphries would extend her podium streak to 15 consecutive, with a win in the first race of the 2013-14 season and a silver in the second race – an unbroken medal-winning streak of 11 gold medals, 2 silver medals and 2 bronze medals from the end of 2011–12 to the start of 2013–14. Humphries ran well through the entire 2013–14 World Cup series, trading podium positions with the American team of pilot Elana Meyers and brakeman Lauryn Williams throughout the season, with Humphries winning her second consecutive World Cup Season title.

This close 2013–14 contest between the Canadians and Americans carried into the 2014 Sochi Olympics competition. Meyers and Williams led after Day 1 of competition having produced two runs built on track record push starts that uncharacteristically beat out the Canadian team at what was their strong suit. Despite being beaten on the start times, Humphries made fewer driving errors and produced cleaner runs but was still just over two tenths of a second back from the lead time. On the second day of competition, the Americans again won out on quick starting pushes but made several driving errors on the technical course. Humphries' clean piloting propelled the Canadians from second place into the gold medal position, allowing them to become the first female bobsleigh team to repeat as Olympic champions, the first female Canadian Olympians to repeat as champions since Catriona Lemay Doan, and etching their names into Olympic history. Humphries said of the record setting achievement: "How do you describe achieving a dream? This is a four-year goal of ours. This has been something that we've done together. Winning gold is amazing, but walking away satisfied is better. After the third run I knew that if we did the business we could be on top."[13][14]

Historic 4-man competitor[edit]

In September 2014, the Fédération Internationale de Bobsleigh et de Tobogganing announced that they would allow mixed-gender crews to compete in four-man bobsleigh. On November 1, 2014, Humphries piloted a mixed-gender team to the bronze medal in the Canadian four-man bobsleigh championships, allowing her team to join crews led by Justin Kripps and Chris Spring as official Canadian entries in the on the international circuit.[15][16]

On November 15, 2014, Humphries and Elana Meyers of the United States became the first women to compete with/against men in an international four-man bobsleigh competition, in the season-opening North American Cup race in Park City, Utah.[2] Humphries piloted her mixed-gender sled to a sixth place finish, Meyers piloted hers to seventh.[17][18][2] Later the same month Humphries and Meyers became the first women to win medals in international four-man bobsleigh competition when they finished second and third in the first of two North American Cup races at the Calgary track.[19]

Humphries won the 2014 Lou Marsh Award in December 2014 as Canada's top athlete for the year.[20]

Personal[edit]

Humphries has competed since 2004 and currently slides with Heather Moyse as her brakeman. She was married to Dan Humphries, a former bobsledder who competed for Great Britain and Canada.[21] However the pair divorced before the 2014 Olympics and Kaillie may or may not return to her maiden name of Simundson.[22]

Activism[edit]

Humphries is affiliated with three main causes, the "I've been Bullied" campaign; "Right to Play", a sports program for underprivileged children and youth; and with the Special Olympics.

The "I've Been Bullied" campaign warns people of the long-term effects of bullying. She speaks about her personal experience as a victim of bullying, and she discusses the importance of avoiding bullying in any sports. "Right to Play" is an organization that uses sport and play as a way to "educate and empower" children facing difficulties such as disease and conflict. She is in this organization with the other Canadian Olympic gold medallist, gymnast Kyle Shewfelt. Humphries and Shewfelt brought equipment for sports and set up some sports programs for the underprivileged children and youth when Humphries and Shewfelt traveled to Liberia in April 2011. They want to give some of the children a chance to change their lives. In the Special Olympics, Humphries speaks regularly at a few elementary schools at Calgary about the importance of physical activity, setting goals, and saying "no" to drugs.[5]

Career highlights[edit]

Olympic Winter Games
2006 – Turin, Alternate – Push Athlete, Did Not Compete
2010 – Vancouver, 1st 1st with Heather Moyse
2014 – Sochi, 1st 1st with Heather Moyse
FIBT (IBSF) World Cup Overall Season Championship
Third, 3rd overall in the 2009–10 FIBT World Cup season
Third, 3rd overall in the 2010–11 FIBT World Cup season
First, 1st overall in the 2012–13 FIBT World Cup season
First, 1st overall in the 2013–14 FIBT World Cup season
World Championships
2008 – Altenberg, 2nd 2nd with Combined Team Event
2011 – Winterberg, 3rd 3rd with Heather Moyse
2011 – Winterberg, 3rd 3rd with Combined Team Event
2012 – Lake Placid, 1st 1st with Jennifer Ciochetti
2012 – Lake Placid, 3rd 3rd with Combined Team Event
2013 – St. Moritz, 1st 1st with Chelsea Valois
2013 – St. Moritz, 3rd 3rd with Combined Team Event
World Cup Single Events
2007/2008 – Lake Placid, 3rd 3rd with Heather Moyse
2008/2009 – Whistler, 2nd 2nd with Heather Moyse
2008/2009 – Park City, 2nd 2nd with Shelley-Ann Brown
2009/2010 – Lake Placid, 3rd 3rd with Combined Team Event
2009/2010 – Lake Placid, 3rd 3rd with Heather Moyse
2009/2010 – Igls, 3rd 3rd with Heather Moyse
2009/2010 – Königsee, 2nd 2nd with Heather Moyse
2009/2010 – Altenberg, 1st 1st with Heather Moyse
2010/2011 – Whistler, 3rd 3rd with Heather Hughes
2011/2012 – Königsee, 3rd 3rd with Combined Team Event
2011/2012 – Königsee, 2nd 2nd with Emily Baadsvik
2011/2012 – La Plagne, 1st 1st with Emily Baadsvik
2011/2012 – Whistler, 1st 1st with Emily Baadsvik
2011/2012 – Calgary, 1st 1st with Jennifer Ciochetti
2012/2013 – Lake Placid, 1st 1st with Chelsea Valois
2012/2013 – Park City, 1st 1st with Chelsea Valois
2012/2013 – Whistler, 1st 1st with Chelsea Valois
2012/2013 – Winterberg, 1st 1st with Chelsea Valois
2012/2013 – La Plagne, 1st 1st with Chelsea Valois
2012/2013 – Altenberg, 3rd 3rd with Chelsea Valois
2012/2013 – Königsee, 1st 1st with Chelsea Valois
2012/2013 – Igls, 2nd 2nd with Chelsea Valois
2012/2013 – Sochi, 3rd 3rd with Chelsea Valois
2013/2014 – Calgary, 1st 1st with Heather Moyse
2013/2014 – Park City, 2nd 2nd with Heather Moyse
2013/2014 – Lake Placid, 1st 1st with Heather Moyse
2013/2014 – St. Moritz, 1st 1st with Heather Moyse
2013/2014 – Königsee, 3rd 3rd with Heather Moyse
Europa Cup
2006/2007 – Europa Cup, 1st Champion
World Junior Championship
2006 – Silver Medalist, 2nd

[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e FIBT-Bobsleigh profile, accessed January 27, 2013
  2. ^ a b c Associated Press staff (2014-11-16). "Women Make 4-Man Bobsled History in Utah". New York Times. Retrieved 2014-11-20. 
  3. ^ Ewing, Lori. "Kaillie Humphries favoured to defend bobsled gold at Sochi Olympics". www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/olympics/kaillie-humphries-favoured-to-defend-bobsled-gold-at-sochi-olympics/article16608365/?page=all. Retrieved 14 August 2014. 
  4. ^ "Kaillie Humphries". 
  5. ^ a b c Vick Hall (February 25, 2010). "Canada nabs gold, silver in bobsleigh". Canada.com. Retrieved February 15, 2013. 
  6. ^ "Humphries, Moyse hit World Cup bobsleigh podium". CBC News. January 22, 2010. Retrieved January 22, 2010. 
  7. ^ Rutherford, Kristina (February 24, 2010). "Canada finishes 1–2 in women's bobsleigh". CTV Olympics. Retrieved February 24, 2010. 
  8. ^ "Canada's Humphries wins bobsleigh gold". CBC Sports. February 18, 2012. 
  9. ^ Gary Kingston (February 19, 2012). "Gold, silver and bronze for Canada". Vancouver Sun. 
  10. ^ a b c "Kaillie Humphries clinches World Cup bobsled season title". CBC Sports. 2012-02-15. Retrieved 2014-11-20. 
  11. ^ Michael Camu (2013-01-26). "Canada's Kaillie Humphries defends world bobsleigh title". CBC Sports. Retrieved 2014-11-20. 
  12. ^ "Calgary's Kaillie Humphries extends historic winning streak". CBC Sports. 2012-12-14. 
  13. ^ Tony Care (2014-02-19). "Kaillie Humphries, Heather Moyse win bobsled gold". CBC Sports. [dead link]
  14. ^ Leslie Young (2014-02-19). "Canada wins gold in women’s bobsled at Sochi Olympics". Global News. Retrieved 2014-11-20. 
  15. ^ BBC Sport staff (2014-09-25). "Bobsleigh gives approval to mixed-gender teams". BBC Sport. Retrieved 2014-11-20. 
  16. ^ BBC Sport staff (2014-11-03). "Canadian Championships: Kaillie Humphries leads team to bronze". BBC Sport. Retrieved 2014-11-20. 
  17. ^ "Ranking Finder - North American Cup/Bobsleigh 4-Men - Humphries, Kallie". Fédération Internationale de Bobsleigh et de Tobogganing. 2014-11-15. Retrieved 2014-11-20. 
  18. ^ "Ranking Finder - North American Cup/Bobsleigh 4-Men - Meyers Taylor, Elana". Fédération Internationale de Bobsleigh et de Tobogganing. 2014-11-15. Retrieved 2014-11-20. 
  19. ^ Hope, Nick (24 November 2014). "Meyers-Taylor and Humphries win historic bobsleigh medals". bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 29 November 2014. 
  20. ^ "Bobsled pilot Kaillie Humphries wins the Lou Marsh award as Canada's top athlete". Winnipeg Free Press. December 11, 2014. 
  21. ^ "Family matters a Humphries storyline". The Guardian (Charlottetown). 26 February 2010. Retrieved 29 November 2014. 
  22. ^ "Watching Kaillie Humphries win gold. Parents rejoice!". Canadian Living. February 20, 2014. Retrieved 2014-12-15. 
Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Jon Cornish
Lou Marsh Trophy winner
2014
Succeeded by
Incumbent