Segger collects Junior World Cup bronze

PARK CITY, Utah — As the first of two Junior World Cup luge events concluded Thursday afternoon at the Utah Olympic Park, Ashley Farquharson joined Zachary Digregorio in singles and the doubles team of Dana Kellogg with Duncan Segger to give USA Luge a bronze medal in the team competition.

Racing on her home track in Park City, site of the 2002 Olympic sliding events, Farquharson opened the day with a team-best seventh place in women’s singles. The bronze medal in the team event brought USA Luge’s two-day total to three medals.

Farquharson raced the lead leg, followed by Digregorio. The doubles team of Kellogg and Segger, of Lake Placid, ran the anchor leg. The foursome combined for a total time of 2 minutes, 14.033 seconds, just 0.13 of a second from the German gold medalists. In a tight chase, Russia placed second, merely 0.03 from the winners.

Earlier in the day, Farquharson, one of three local athletes competing at home for the U.S. this week, took a serious run at the podium. In each heat, the 19-year-old pulled impressive start times and showed impressive speed heading down the 15-curve track. Her two heats totaled 1:29.588. There was just 0.2 of a second between seventh and second places. In winning both legs, Anna Berreiter, of Germany, captured the event in 1:29.225.

Sophie Kirkby, of Ray Brook, was 18th; Elana Morrison placed 22nd; and Chevonne Forgan finished 24th.

Keaton Jens led the U.S. in the junior men’s event. Jens finished 10th, while Luke Voegeli was 17th. For both Americans, it was their first start at this level of competition.

Germany swept the day’s three races, with Elias Bollmann winning men’s singles by 0.28 of a second. Bollmann had the fastest times of each heat.

As Park City is the site of the first two Junior World Cups of the season, this schedule will repeat itself on Saturday. The youth athletes return to the Utah Olympic Park on Friday to begin the second series of races at the UOP.

WEDNESDAY

PARK CITY, Utah — USA Luge youngsters opened the 2018-2019 Junior World Cup season with silver and bronze medals Wednesday on the 2002 Olympic track in Park City, Utah.

Maya Chan and Reannyn Weiler raced to a silver medal in the inaugural women’s doubles event. The discipline will be on the program for the 2020 Youth Olympic Games in Switzerland, and are getting consideration for inclusion in the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing.

Chan, of Chicago, and Weiler, of Whitesboro, New York, posted two runs totaling 1 minute, 26.475 seconds, including the fastest final heat of the event. They wound up 0.3 of a second from Canadian winners Caitlin Nash and Natalie Corless. It’s the first international medal for the U.S. lugers.

Ian Smith captured a bronze medal in Youth A men, also marking his first appearance on an international podium. Smith led a collection of five Americans in the top 15. The Carlisle, Massachusetts athlete was in fourth place after one heat, but reeled off the third best second run to place himself on the podium. Smith’s total time of 1:29.224 brought him inside 0.7 of a second from Slovakian winner Marian Skupek, who led both heats.

Matt Greiner, on his home track, was fifth; Sam Eckert, of Wilmington, was eighth; Michael O’Gara, of La Crescenta, California, was ninth; and Sean Rogers, of Fanwood, New Jersey, took 13th.

In junior doubles, the duo of Dana Kellogg, of Chesterfield, Massachusetts, and Duncan Segger, of Lake Placid, took seventh as they have moved up to the junior age group.

USA Luge continued to display depth in the Youth A women’s competition as Sophia Gordon was at the front of a 7-8-9 team performance. Gordon, from Sussex, Wisconsin, was just over a second from Canadian gold medalist Trinity Ellis. Canada grabbed four of the top five spots.

Behind Gordon, Emma Erickson claimed eighth, while Delaney Duncan slid to ninth. The final member of the U.S. team — McKenna Mazlo, of Souderton, Pennsylvania — was 12th.

For many in this group of USA youth and juniors, it was their first exposure to international luge racing.

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