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Meyers and Eberling in bronze medal position after day one
LAKE PLACID, N.Y. (Feb. 17, 2012)–Elana Meyers (Douglasville, Ga.) and Katie Eberling (Palos Hills, Ill.) are in the running for the women’s bobsled 2012 World Championship title after crossing the finish in third position after day one of racing.
“It’s awesome to be in the hunt,” Meyers said. “I knew I had a good chance with our strong push and being on our home track, so it’s exciting. I’m glad to be in the medal hunt and looking to move up tomorrow.”
Meyers and Eberling blasted the KOA sled off the block in 5.54 and 5.51 seconds to lead the field at the start. Meyers held her lead for most of the first run, but fell back 0.12 seconds to reigning Olympic champion Kaillie Humphries.
Meyers is competing in only her second season as a pilot, while Eberling just began the sport this fall. The rookie pair was in silver medal position going into the second run, but they looked like seasoned veterans standing confidently on the line.
“There is no atmosphere quite like this,” Eberling said. “You just have to keep it cool and stay level headed and know that it’s the same as any other race. You still run the same amount. There was more excitement than nervousness and [Elana] keeps me calm.”
Meyers and Eberling again led at the start, but a small mistake midway down the course cost USA-1 one spot at the finish. The KOA duo caps the first two heats in third position with a total time of 1:54.67, and are within striking distance of gold and silver with two heats remaining.
“It’s great to come out here and be able to compete,” Meyers said. “There’s a lot of competition out there. We put together a really nice first run and I made a few mistakes on the second run that I am hoping to clean up for tomorrow.”
Humphries and Jennifer Ciochetti have a chance of claiming the crown with a strong lead of 0.40 seconds. The Canadian pair posted the fastest runs of the day for a total time of 1:54.17. German legend Sandra Kirisias teamed with Petra Lammert to sneak ahead of USA-1 for silver medal position with a two-run total of 1:54.58. The medal deciding runs will take place at 5 pm tomorrow.
Jazmine Fenlator (Wayne, N.J.) made her World Championship debut with veteran Ingrid Marcum (Elmhurst, Ill.) today. The USA-3 FDNY sled crossed the line with a two-run total of 1:55.33 for ninth position, and Fenlator posted the sixth fastest run of the second heat to gain confidence going into tomorrow’s final.
“I am really excited,” Fenlator said. “It’s awesome to be on my home track. I’m really comfortable here and feeling confident. Although I am a new driver, I am just trying to get better every run and chip away, and hopefully at the bottom when I look up it’s a pleasant surprise.”
Bree Schaaf (Bremerton, Wash.) and Emily Azevedo (Chico, Calif.) have had a tumultuous season, and today was no exception. Schaaf has been battling an injury since this summer, and she recently become ill leading into this weekend’s races.
The Sliding for Hope sled clocked a two-run total of 1:55.64 and the 2010 Olympic teammates were visibly disappointed with their 12th place seating.
“I’ve felt better,” Schaaf said. “You’re always looking for an opportunity to resurrect your season. I guess that is what tomorrow will be, one last opportunity to bring it back”
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1. Kaillie Humphries and Jennifer Ciochetti (CAN) 1:54.17 (57.10, 57.07); 2. Sandra Kiriasis and Petra Lammert (GER) 1:54.58 (57.30, 57.28); 3. Elana Meyers and Katie Eberling (USA) 1:54.67 (57.22, 57.45);…9. Jazmine Fenlator and Ingrid Marcum (USA) 1:55.33 (57.81, 57.52);…12. Bree Schaaf and Emily Azevedo (USA) 1:55.64 (57.95, 57.69);
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, Under Armour, United States National Guard, Kampgrounds of America, National Strength and Conditioning Association, Vivat!, Global Forwarding, KBC Helmets, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, EDAS/Ripxx, UberSense, Tesa Tape and Ferris Mfg. Corp. For more information, please visit the USBSF website at http://bobsled.teamusa.org.