Altenberg bobsleigh, luge, and skeleton track
Altenberg raced bobsleigh as early as 1908 on a natural track going downhill. By the late 1970s, the East Germans who were already successful in luge, began getting success in bobsleigh. This included a total of six Winter Olympic medals in bobsleigh in 1976 and 1980, along with five world bobsleigh championship medals between 1977 and 1979. In order to increase East Germany's effort to win more bobsleigh and luge medals both at the Winter Olympics and their respective sport's world championships, a track was constructed. The track at Altenberg was constructed under the order of then-Stasi (Ministry for State Security in East Germany) Minister Erich Mielke.Construction began in 1981 under restrictive access with a wire fence and armed patrols from the Landstreitkräfte (East German National People's Army) on orders from Mielke. By 1983, construction was completed though trials were less than successful. This would result in turns 11 and 12 being destroyed and rebuilt. It was not until late 1986 when the track was officially completed with homologation received from both the International Bobsleigh and Tobogganing Federation (FIBT) and the International Luge Federation (FIL) the following year. The track was part of the training used by SG Dynamo Zinnwald/ SV Dynamo until the 1990 German reunification. Men's skeleton first competed in 1992. In 1997, the women's single luge start house was created before turn three after being shared with the men's double luge start house before turn seven from 1989 to 1996. Women's skeleton first began competition in 1999 while women's bobsleigh first started the following year. An 18th curve was modified during the summer of 2007 with the addition of a finish curve and straightaway. The weekend of 1–3 February 2008 had the track hosting the 200th FIL Luge World Cup event that began in December 1977. The track was awarded the 2012 FIL World Luge Championships at the 2008 FIL Congress in Calgary, Alberta, Canada on 28 June of that year following Whistler, British Columbia's bid withdrawal. Refurbishment of the track for the 2012 World Luge Championships will cost € 1.4 million which includes modernizing the electronics and refrigeration system and renovation of the women's and junior start houses.
Track technical details
The track is powered by four refrigeration condensers each with a 200 kW (268 hp) capacity which combined can keep the track frozen at ambient conditions up to 20 deg C (68 deg F). Its storage tanks hold up to 45 metric tons (49.5 tons) of ammonia, generating the equivalent of 12,000 household refrigerators. There a total of fifty sensors located throughout the track with its staff contacted at a moment's notice if anything bad occurs. Monitoring is done by closed-circuit television to further enhance track security  The icing of the track starts in October, taking eight workers one week to evenly ice the track to a layer of 2–6 cm (0.79-2.36 in) at a temperature of -13 deg C (9 deg F).
|Bobsleigh and skeleton||1413||17|
|Luge - men's singles||1387||17|
|Luge - women's singles||1220||15|
|Luge - men's doubles, team relay and junior||996||11|
The venue includes a vertical drop of 122.22 meters from start to finish with a maximum grade of 15% and an average grade of 8.66%
|Image||Turn number||Name||Reason named|
|3, 4, 5||Omega||After the Omega shape.|
|Image not found||6, 7, 8, 9||Labyrinth||Four turns in quick succession without a straight (labyrinth)|
|10.||Kreisel||320-degree Kreisel (circular) curve.|
|.||15, 16, 17||Zielkreisel||"Finish curve" in (German). Also a Kreisel curve.|
Turns 1, 2, 11–14, and 18 have no names listed in the track diagram. Turn 18 is followed by a Bremshang, a finish/braking straight.
|Sport||Record||Nation - athlete(s)||Date||Time (seconds)|
|Bobsleigh two-man||Start||Germany - André Lange & Kevin Kuske||20 December 2003||5.12|
|Bobsleigh two-man||Track||Russia - Alexandre Zoubkov & Alexey Voevoda||7 January 2017||54.48|
|Bobsleigh four-man||Start||Germany - Christoph Langen, Sven Rühr, Markus Zimmermann, & Olav Hampel||12 January 1996||5.04|
|Bobsleigh four-man||Track||Germany - André Lange, René Hoppe, Kevin Kuske, & Martin Putze||24 February 2008||53.17|
|Bobsleigh two-woman||Start||Canada - Kaillie Humphries & Heather Moyse||19 December 2009||5.74|
|Bobsleigh two-woman||Track||Canada - Helen Upperton & Jennifer Ciochetti||19 December 2009||56.79|
|Men's skeleton||Start||Aleksandr Tretyakov - Russia||10 February 2007||4.90|
|Men's skeleton||Track||Christopher Grotheer - Germany||7 January 2017||56.20|
|Women's skeleton||Start||Kerstin Jürgens - Germany||8 January 2005||5.51|
|Women's skeleton||Track||Anja Huber - Germany||5 January 2008||58.86|
|Luge - men's singles||Start||Johannes Ludwig - Germany||5 December 2009||7.555|
|Luge - men's singles||Track||Albert Demtschenko - Russia||26 November 2005||54.222|
|Luge - women's singles||Start||Natalie Geisenberger - Germany||6 December 2009||6.054|
|Luge - women's singles||Track||Sylke Otto - Germany||27 November 2005||53.091|
|Luge - men's doubles||Start||Germany - Tobias Wendl & Tobias Arlt||22 January 2009||6.202|
|Luge - men's doubles||Track||Germany - Tobias Wendl & Tobias Arlt||2 February 2008||42.109|
- FIBT World Championships: 1991 (bobsleigh), 1994 (men's skeleton), 2000 (men's bobsleigh), 2008
- FIL European Luge Championships: 2002
- FIL World Luge Championships: 1996 2012
- Bobsleigh two-man Olympic medalists: 1932-56 and since 1964
- Bobsleigh four-man Olympic medalists: 1924, 1932-56, and since 1964
- Bobsleigh two-man world championship medalists since 1931
- Bobsleigh four-man world championships medalists since 1930
- RSBV.de link on luge at Altenberg. - accessed 2 December 2009.
- RSBV.de link on bobsleigh at Altenberg. (German) - accessed 2 December 2009.
- Link to proof the Dynamo track(German)
- SV Dynamo bobsleigh link(German)
- Historical track records of men's skeleton since 1992 at Altenberg. (German) - accessed 2 December 2009.
- Historical track records of luge women's singles track records since 1986 at Altenberg (German) - accessed 2 December 2009.
- Historical track records of women's skeleton since 1999 at Altenberg (German) - accessed 2 December 2009.
- Two-woman bobsleigh track records since 2000 at Altenberg (German) - accessed 2 December 2009.
- RSBV.de skeleton history at the Altenberg track.(German) - accessed 2 December 2009.
- Track profile (German) - accessed 2 December 2009.
- No drudgery after luge festival in Thuringia. at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (30 January 2008 article accessed 2 December 2009.)
- 56th FIL Congress in Calgary at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (29 April 2008 article accessed 2 December 2009).
- 56th FIL Congress in Calgary at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (28 June 2008 article accessed 2 December 2009.)
- 1.4 million Euros for Altenberg at the Fédération Internationale de Luge de Course (11 May 2009 article accessed 2 December 2009)
- Technical details of Altenberg. - accessed 2 December 2009.
- List of track records at Altenberg current as of 2 December 2009 (German)
- Humphires and Moyse Set Records, Win in Altenberg. at the Fédération Internationale de Bobsleigh et de Tobogganing (19 December 2009 article accessed 19 December 2009.)
- FIL Luge World Cup Altenberg 5 December 2009 men's singles results. - accessed 5 December 2009.
- FIL Luge World Cup Altenberg 6 December 2009 women's singles results. - accessed 6 December 2009.
- FIL Luge World Cup Altenberg 5 December 2009 doubles results. - accessed 5 December 2009.
- FIBT men's skeleton world championships men's skeleton results since 1989
- FIL European Luge Championships men's singles results since 1914
- FIL World Luge Championships men's single results since 1955
- FIBT track profile - Click on video for ride down the track. It will show the bobsleigh-skeleton part intersecting with the men's single luge track prior to turn one, the women's single luge track prior to turn three, and the men's doubles luge track prior to turn seven.
- FIL-Luge track profile
- Official website (German)
- RSBV.de profile with the track. (German)