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Bobsled pilots Kelly and Bascue lead U.S. team in Igls European Cup
IGLS, Austria (Jan. 13, 2014)- Up-and-coming bobsled pilots Katelyn Kelly (Orchard Park, N.Y.) and Codie Bascue (Whitehall, N.Y.) packed up after the holiday break and headed overseas to gain valuable experience and pick up additional points on the European Cup circuit. Athletes competed in a series of double races from Jan. 8-12 on the 1976 Olympic track.
Kelly’s progress this season was halted when she broke her jaw while racing in U.S. team selection races, but she was eager to get back on the ice and into her race suit over the weekend.
“It was really amazing to finally put on the USA speed suit that I had hoped to be wearing in October and finally be racing again,” Kelly said. “It’s challenging coming over to race in Europe by yourself, but with some grit, ingenuity and good people skills with my brakemen, we’ve done really well. I’m very proud of both of them.”
Push athletes Maureen Ajoku (San Jose, Calif.) and Sineaid Corley (New London, N.H.) traveled with Kelly to Europe. Ajoku helped push Kelly to 12th and 13th place finishes in the two-race series with combined times of 1:50.49 and 1:52.91.
“This is definitely the largest field I’ve ever raced in as a pilot,” Kelly said. “It was great. It wasn’t my best result, but I’ve made a lot of progress, and that’s what you come here to do- learn new tracks and compete on a more challenging circuit.”
Carolin Zenker and Sarah Noll from Germany swept the women’s races with combined times of 1:48.72 and 1:50.95. Their teammates, Stefanie Szczurek and Lisa Marie Buckwitz, earned double silver medals with totals of 1:48.73 and 1:51.35. Victoria Olaoye and Gillian Cooke from Great Britain were bronze medalists in the first race (1:48.93), while Christina Hengster and Viola Kleiser from Austria claimed bronze for the host nation in the second race (1:51.45).
Junior driver Bascue teamed with Michael McCarty (Hudson, Ohio) and Dallas Irvin (Salt Lake City, Utah) for 27th and 16th place finishes, respectively, in the men’s two-man bobsled races. Bascue took some risks in the first run and missed the cutoff for the final heat after clocking the 27th fastest time of 53.82 seconds in the first race.
“These results aren’t exactly what I had hoped for going into the European Cup,” Bascue said. “There were a few bumps in the road during the week and some risky decisions made before the first two-man race, but we got through it and all of the push athletes pushed their hearts out.”
Bascue teamed with Irvin the next day to better his performance by 11 spots with a 16th place finish after clocking a total time of 1:46.88.
Albrecht Klammer and Christian Schmacht from Germany were victorious in the first two-man race with a total time of 1:45.63. Latvians Oskars Kibermanis and Vairis Leiboms were second in 1:45.64, while Germans Nico Walther and Candy Bauer posted a total time of 1:45.87 for third.
Germans Benjamin Schmid and Matthias Kagerhuber were the second day race winners with a combined time of 1:45.70. Benjamin Maier and Markus Sammer nabbed silver for the host nation with a two-run total of 1:45.72, while Walther and Paasche claimed their second bronze medal of the event with an aggregate time of 1:45.93.
Bascue, Irvin, Dollens and Mickey Dollens (Claremore, Okla.) combined efforts to finish 19th in both four-man bobsled races. The crew was in 21st after a first run of 52.61 seconds and did not qualify for a second heat, but he moved into 19th after one team crashed and another pulled out of the final. Bascue stepped it up in the second four-man bobsled race, piecing together two runs of 52.64 and 52.82 seconds for a combined time of 1:45.46 to earn 19th.
Nikita Zakharov from Russia piloted his squad to the first victory in 1:43.82. Schmid and his crew claimed silver with a two-run total of 1:44.09, and Klammer collected another medal for the German team, bronze, with a combined time of 1:44.12.
Schmid led his German team to the finish in 1:43.93 to claim the second four-man gold medal and his third medal of the weekend. Maier and his Austrian crew tied the Russian squad piloted by Maxim Andrianov for the silver medal (1:44.08).
The European Cup continues with bobsled and skeleton races on the natural ice track in St. Moritz, Switzerland from Jan. 16-19.
“I am looking forward to improving this week in St. Moritz,” Bascue said. “I’m extremely excited to see what the end of the season brings and believe we can turn some heads within the next few weeks.”
Please contact Amanda Bird, USBSF Marketing & Communications Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 518-354-2250 with media inquiries.
Women’s bobsled race #1
1. Carolin Zenker and Sarah Noll (GER) 1:48.72 (54.14, 54.58); 2. Stefanie Szczurek and Lisa Marie Buckwitz (GER) 1:48.73 (54.10, 54.63); 3. Victoria Olaoye and Gillian Cooke (GBR) 1:48.93 (54.36, 54.57);…12. Katelyn Kelly and Maureen Ajoku (USA) 1:50.49 (54.96, 55.53);
Women’s bobsled race #2
1. Carolin Zenker and Sarah Noll (GER) 1:50.95 (55.18, 55.77); 2. Stefanie Szczurek and Lisa Marie Buckwitz (GER) 1:51.35 (55.46, 55.89); 3. Christina Hengster and Viola Kleiser (AUT) 1:51.45 (55.41, 56.04);…13. Katelyn Kelly and Maureen Ajoku (USA) 1:52.91 (56.45, 56.46);
Men’s two-man bobsled race #1:
1. Albrecht Klammer and Christian Schmacht (GER) 1:45.63 (52.69, 52.94); 2. Oskars Kibermanis and Vairis Leiboms (LAT) 1:45.64 (52.82, 52.82); 3. Nico Walther and Candy Bauer (GER) 1:45.87 (52.85, 53.02);…27. Codie Bascue and Michael McCarty (USA) (53.82, DNS);
Men’s two-man bobsled race #2:
1. Benjamin Schmid and Matthias Kagerhuber (GER) 1:45.70 (52.70, 53.00); 2. Benjamin Maier and Markus Sammer (AUT) 1:45.72 (52.65, 53.07); 3. Nico Walther and Tino Paasche (GER) 1:45.93 (52.81, 53.12);…16. Codie Bascue and Dallas Irvin (USA) 1:46.88 (53.33, 53.55);
Men’s four-man bobsled race #1:
1. Zakharov, Huzin, Moiseev and Khrenkov (RUS) 1:43.82 (51.77, 52.05); 2. Schmid, Heinemann, Kagerhuber and Bogdaschin (GER) 1:44.09 (51.87, 52.22); 3. Klammer, Knotzsch, Jaques and Kunze (GER) 1:44.12 (51.97, 52.15);…19. Bascue, Irvin, Dollens and McCarty (USA) (52.61, DNS);
Men’s four-man bobsled race #2:
1. Schmid, Heinemann, Kagerhuber and Bogdaschin (GER) 1:43.93 (51.87, 52.06); 2. Maier, Withalm, Sammer and Somov (AUT) 1:44.08 (51.97, 52.11); 2. Andrianov, Utkin, Chubakov and Zaitsev (RUS) 1:44.08 (52.02, 52.06);…19. Bascue, Irvin, Dollens and McCarty (USA) 1:45.46 (52.64, 52.82);
About the U.S. Bobsled and Skeleton Federation
The United States Bobsled and Skeleton Federation, based in Lake Placid, N.Y., is the national governing body for the sports of bobsled and skeleton in the United States. The USBSF would like to thank its sponsors, suppliers and contributors for their support: BMW of North America, Century 21 Real Estate, CEVA Logistics, Under Armour, Kampgrounds of America, Boomerang Carnets, 24 Hour Fitness, KBC Helmets, Eastern European Distribution Company, Azad Watches, Latta USA, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Autism Speaks, Park City Lodging, Inc., EDAS/Ripxx, UberSense, Tesa Tape and Ferris Mfg. Corp. For more information, please visit the USBSF website at http://bobsled.teamusa.org.