Sport in the Spotlight: Luge
Luge

Sport in the Spotlight: Luge

30 January 2018 / 14:30

The sport first appeared at Innsbruck 1964, with men’s, women’s and doubles all being contested at every Games since. At Sochi 2014 the team relay was introduced, and has been maintained for the PyeongChang 2018 schedule.

Adding the medals of Germany, East Germany, West Germany and the United Team of Germany together, the nation has won 75 of a possible 129 in the sport’s Olympic history.

They swept the board at Sochi 2014, with Felix Loch and Natalie Geisenberger winning the men’s and women’s singles titles and Tobias Wendl and Tobias Arlt doing likewise in the doubles before all four combined in the team relay.

Italy’s Armin Zöggeler leads the individual medal table with six in total – two gold, one silver and three bronze – while Georg Hackl and Felix Loch, both of Germany, each have three gold medals to their name.

The Schedule

February 10 

Men’s single heat 1&2 – 19:10-22:20 (10:10-13:10 UK Time)

February 11

Men’s single heat 3&4 – 18:50-21:35 (09:50-12:35 UK Time)

February 12

Women’s single heat 1&2 – 19:50-22:20 (10:50-13:20 UK Time)

February 13

Women’s single heat 3&4 – 19:30-21:55 (10:30-12:55 UK Time)

February 14

Doubles heat 1&2 – 20:20-22:25 (11:20-13:25)

February 15

Team relay – 21:30-22:45 (12:30-13:45)

How Team GB has fared in the past

Team GB have yet to win an Olympic Winter medal in luge and PyeongChang 2018 will be the first time Great Britain has been represented on the biggest stage since Vancouver 2010.

Britwatch

Adam Rosen

Adam Rosen, or ‘AJ’ as he is also known, will be making his third Olympic Winter Games appearance for Team GB after finishing 16th at both Turin 2006 and then four years later in Vancouver.

He has competed at senior level since 2003/2004 and achieved a season’s best placing of 27th at the Oberhof World Cup in the run up to PyeongChang, last month.

Rosen holds the British record for the best-ever luge finish, placing sixth at the Calgary World Cup in 2009.

Rupert Staudinger

Despite being just 20 years of age, Rupert Staudinger already has plenty of competition experience, placing second at last year’s British Championships and coming tenth in the team relay at the 2017 European Championships.

Staudinger competed at the last two senior World Championships, with his best placing being 14th in the team relay in Innsbruck, last year.

He has appeared on the World Cup circuit this season in the team relay, although Staudinger’s Olympic Winter Games debut will come in the men’s singles in PyeongChang.

Who is the competition?

Felix Loch

The defending Olympic champion, Loch has won the World Cup in three of the four seasons since Sochi 2014 – including this term.

Aged just 28, Loch already has two Olympic gold medals and 12 World Championship titles to his name – he will be the undoubted favourite in PyeongChang.

Wolfgang Kindl

Reigning world champion and runner up in this season’s World Cup, if anyone is going to topple Loch then it may just be Wolfgang Kindl.

The 29-year-old has two World Cup race wins to his name this season, and two second places, and having won both the singles and sprint titles at the 2017 World Championships the Austrian knows he can perform on the big occasion.

Natalie Geisenberger

Another German heading to PyeongChang looking to defend their title, Natalie Geisenberger’s achievements are almost on a par with Loch’s.

The 29-year-old also has two Olympic gold medals to her name, and seven world titles, and with the overall World Cup already secured this season – for the sixth time in a row – she will be the woman to beat in South Korea.

Summer Britcher

After finishing 15th at Sochi 2014 as just a teenager, Summer Britcher could be the woman to break the German stranglehold in PyeongChang.

She finished third in the World Cup this season, just 28 points behind second-placed Dajana Eitberger, and with two wins in the last four races she is clearly in form.

Sportsbeat 2018

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