Janine Flock in second, Jacqueline Lölling defends overall lead in third
La Plagne (RWH): One of the longest standing track records in skeleton has now been consigned to history: With a time of 1:01.35 minutes in heat two at the BMW IBSF World Cup race in La Plagne (FRA), the winner of the women's skeleton race, Elena Nikitina of Russia, was almost 1.5 seconds faster than the old record, which was set by the UK’s Alex Coomber in December 2000. Coomber won the Olympic bronze medal in 2002 and was also the overall World Cup winner from 2000 to 2002. Measuring over 1,700 metres in length and with winning times of one minute and above in the women’s skeleton, La Plagne is one of the world’s longest artificial sliding tracks.
On what was her eighth World Cup victory, the defending title holder Elena Nikitina secured a 0.65-second lead over the European Champion Janine Flock of Austria in second place. World Championship silver medallist Jacqueline Lölling (GER, 0.86 seconds back) finished third.
At the BMW IBSF World Cup, Elena Nikitina also managed to improve on La Plagne’s starting record, which was set by Marina Gilardoni (SUI) over seven years ago in December 2012. Nikitina managed to shave over 0.3 seconds off the time so that it now stands at exactly 6.00 seconds.
Local hero Agathe Bessard of France, who finished third at the 2016 Youth Olympic Games, finished in 16th on her World Cup debut.
In the overall standings for the 2019/2020 BMW IBSF World Cup, Jacqueline Lölling (GER) holds a narrow lead at the mid-way point in the season. The 2018 Olympic silver medallist currently has 827 points, which puts her ahead of Janine Flock (AUT, 820). Elena Nikitina (GER, 794) is third overall.