Justin Kripps takes silver ahead of Johannes Lochner with bronze
Königssee (RWH): Gold in the two-man bobsleigh and a fourth consecutive title: Francesco Friedrich of Germany has won the 2017 BMW IBSF World Championships in Königssee (GER). By achieving the best time on all four runs, the 26-year-old bobsleigh pilot and his brakeman Thorsten Margis secured a 1.20-second lead over of the rest of the field in the two-man bobsleigh and his fourth consecutive title after winning gold in 2013, 2015 and 2016.
In doing so, Francesco Friedrich closed on in Italy’s legendary bobsleigh pilot Eugenio Monti. After securing the title in 1957, 1958, 1959, 1960 and 1961, he is the only athlete to win the World Championships on five consecutive occasions (in 1960, his Olympic gold medal also counted as a World Championship title).
Justin Kripps of Canada won silver in Königssee to celebrate his first ever World Championship medal. Brakeman Jesse Lumsden already won silver in the two-man bobsleigh World Championships with pilot Lyndon Rush in Lake Placid in 2012.
On his fourth run, local hero Johannes Lochner with Joshua Bluhm (GER, 1.25 seconds back) defended the bronze medal position ahead of the Latvian duo of Oskars Kibermanis/Matiss Miknis in fourth place.
Nick Poloniato/Neville Wright (CAN) in fifth place and Rudy Rinaldi/Boris Vain (MON) in tenth both celebrated their best World Championship results by far at the 2017 BMW IBSF World Championships. ©RWH2017
Francesco Friedrich (GER, 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2017 World Champion)
“Our starts were good and we had four great runs. We did our homework after the World Cup race here. I still have to do a bit of work to become the best bobsleigh pilot of all time as there are still a few people ahead of me. But I am still young.”
Justin Kripps (CAN, 2017 World Championships silver medallist, sixth at 2014 Winter Olympics)
„At first I want to say thanks to everybody who is still behind us and support us. It was a pretty dismal season but we managed to turn around and got it when it counts. I really love Königssee, I’ve quite a history here. It’s amazing to come down to win a medal and it’s even sweeter at the World Championships.“
Johannes Lochner (GER, third place in the 2017 World Championships, second in the World Championships in 2015 (shared with Oskars Melbardis) and 2016, Junior World Champion 2016)
“It was a shame that the first three runs were more or less write-offs. However, the fourth run showed that we could do it. Now I am just happy that it’s over and we were able to hold onto our place on the podium. In the four-man event next week, I’m sure we can build a bit on our starts and then things will be great.”
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18 Mar 2017
BMW IBSF World Cup: Francesco Friedrich wins first ever overall World Cup title in 2-man bobsleigh