Overall winner of 4-man bobsleigh set to be crowned at BMW IBSF World Cup in St. Moritz
Olympia Bobrun track is a highlight on the World Cup tour for all athletes
St. Moritz (RWH) The seventh of the eight stops in the 2019/2020 BMW IBSF World Cup is scheduled for the St. Moritz-Celerina Olympia Bobrun track. Athletes’ eyes tend to light up when they arrive at this track: Embedded in the breath-taking mountain setting and almost always bathed in sunlight, St. Moritz is one of the highlights of every World Cup tour. What’s more, the track has relied exclusively on snow, water and the chilly winter temperatures for the past 100+ years. “The track is just incredibly beautiful and calm. The only thing you hear is the whistling of the wind. It’s just great fun,” says bobsleigh pilot Francesco Friedrich (GER) about this unique natural ice track.
4-man finale on Sunday – Defending title holder Friedrich leads 2-man and 4-man events
The race in St. Moritz will mark the end of the BMW IBSF World Cup season for the 4-man bobsleigh teams. The winner of the overall World Cup will be crowned on Sunday (2 February). After the seventh of eight races, the defending World Cup title holder Francesco Friedrich (GER) has a good 50 points more than Johannes Lochner (GER). In St. Moritz, a sixth-place finish will be enough to secure Friedrich overall victory in the 4-man bobsleigh. In the overall standings for the 2-man bobsleigh BMW IBSF World Cup, there is no threat to the defending title holder Friedrich ahead of the race in St. Moritz. With a lead of over 225 points, no other athlete will be able to take the top spot at the race. In contrast, Johannes Lochner (GER) is under a lot more pressure: He must finish on the podium in St. Moritz to qualify to compete in the 2-man bobsleigh at the World Championships. Otherwise, his spot will go to Richard Oelsner, as the federation BSD reports.
Plenty of surprises in the 2-woman bobsleigh
“Expect the unexpected” is a good way to sum up the 2019/2020 season in the BMW IBSF World Cup. Top-three finishes for World Cup debutantes, career-first World Cup victories and a colourful mixture of countries and teams leading the pack – when it comes to the battle for the overall title, things couldn’t be more exciting. Seven different countries make up the top ten. No more than 60 points separate the female athletes, but in some cases, it is far fewer.
Action remains gripping in the men’s and women's skeleton
Ahead of the seventh of eight races in the skeleton World Cup, the two events are turning out to be a real sporting thriller: After securing his third win of the season in Königssee, the defending title holder Alexander Tretiakov (RUS) is back in the top spot for the men’s skeleton, closely followed by the World Champion Martins Dukurs (28 points back) and Olympic Champion Sungbin Yun (KOR, 54 points back). In the women’s skeleton, current leader Jacqueline Lölling (GER) was able to ease ahead slightly with her second-place finish in Königssee and now has a 50-point lead over European Champion Janine Flock (AUT). She is followed by World Champion Tina Hermann, who is now only 20 points behind the Austrian after her victory in Königssee. And in fourth and fifth place, the defending title holder Elena Nikitina of Russia and Canada’s Mirela Rahneva are by no means out of the race for the glass globe trophies for the top three athletes in the overall World Cup. Local hero Marina Gilardoni could also make up some good ground in St. Moritz. The Swiss athlete, who is currently sixth in the overall standings, has already had the World Cup podium in her sights once this season with her fourth-place finish in La Plagne (FRA). ©RWH2020
The schedule for St. Moritz
On the sidelines
Christoph Langen (GER) has been training up-and-coming Swiss bobsleigh athletes since 2016. Before taking on this role, the 57-year-old was the head coach of the German bobsleigh team for six years, securing a number of titles with his athletes, including eight World Championship titles. As a bobsleigh pilot, Christoph Langen won two Olympic gold medals (1998 in the 4-man bobsleigh, 2002 in the 2-man bobsleigh) and seven World and European Championship titles. His Swiss proteges include Michael Vogt, who secured his first World Cup podium finish at the 2-man bobsleigh race in La Plagne. In the overall standings for the BMW IBSF World Cup, the 22-year-old is currently in third place. ©RWH2020
Rico Peter (SUI), the 2016 World Championship bronze medallist in the 4-man bobsleigh, carried the Olympic torch for one leg ahead of the 2020 Lausanne Youth Winter Olympic Games. At the end of November 2019, he symbolically lit the YOG flame in his home town of Aarau. “It reminded me of the two Winter Olympic Games that I had the honour of competing in,” said the 36-year-old in a Lausanne 2020 video. “The moment you knew that things were about to kick off and you had to battle for the best result was always one of the best feelings.” ©RWH2020
Alina Tararychenkova (RUS) and Felix Seibel (GER) are the 2020 Junior European Champions in skeleton. Tararychenkova won the last women’s skeleton race in the 2019/2020 IBSF Europe Cup in Altenberg (GER). The season finale also counted as the European Championships for the female juniors. Amelia Coltman (GBR) won the overall standings in the 2019/2020 IBSF Europe Cup. During her debut season, the 23-year-old celebrated two wins and three further podium finishes. In the men’s skeleton, Felix Seibel won both the Junior European Championship title and the overall Europe Cup. ©RWH2020
Ander Mirambell (ESP) celebrated his second overall victory in the IBSF North America Cup in a very special way. He presented his skeleton trophy to the crowd of over 30,000 spectators in Barcelona ahead of the La Liga match between RCD Espanyol de Barcelona and Athletic de Bilbao. In addition to his career as an active skeleton athlete and coach for up-and-coming stars from Spain, Ander Mirambell also works for RCD Espanyol. ©RWH2020
This season’s winners in the 2019/2020 BMW IBSF World Cup – Skeleton
This season’s winners in the 2019/2020 BMW IBSF World Cup – Bobsleigh pilots
>> Athlete profiles on ibsf.org with medals tables, news and photos for all athletes
You can follow the action in all races in the 2019/2020 BMW IBSF World Cup on our live stream and the live results ticker ibsf.org as usual. In Latvia, LTV has exclusive broadcasting rights for all events, which will appear either on TV or on its own live stream. NBC/Olympic Channel (USA), CBC (Canada) and SRG (Switzerland) will be showing some World Cup races live and ARD and ZDF in Germany will showing some races live or live or with a short delay. In these countries, the live stream on ibsf.org and Youtube will be blocked.
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