USA Luge announces National Team

Team includes eight Olympians, welcomes two juniors

Emily Sweeney smiles as she finishes her final run in a luge World Cup race Sunday in Winterberg, Germany. (Provided photo — Mareks Galinovskis, FIL)

LAKE PLACID — USA Luge announced the members of the 2023 National Team on Tuesday. The group features eight Olympic athletes, Summer Britcher, Emily Sweeney, Ashley Farquharson, Chris Mazdzer, Jonny Gustafson, Tucker West, Zack DiGregorio and Sean Hollander.

The team will seek to build on the team’s success from last season, which resulted in nine medals and 58 top-ten World Cup finishes, including 11 top-ten finishes at the World Championships.

Joining the squad will be two graduating juniors that were named to the team at the coaching staff’s discretion and are eligible for this status when they age out of the junior category.

Women’s singles

Sweeney, who led the U.S. team during the 2022 World Cup season by collecting medals in women’s singles, sprint and team relay competitions, will return for her 12th season with the team. Sweeney, of Lake Placid, also placed third in the 2022-23 overall Sprint World Cup.

Britcher, a three-time Olympian, Britcher, from Glen Rock, Pennsylvania, secured seven top-ten finishes last season and placed in the top five in team relay at the 2023 World Championships with teammates West and the duo of DiGregorio and Hollander. Britcher has five World Cup victories, the most in U.S. luge singles history.

Brittany Arndt, of Park City, Utah, will begin the 2023 season coming off her most successful season. She made her first podium appearance in a World Cup competition with a bronze medal in women’s singles sprint on her home track in Park City, Utah. She also secured a personal best result during the 2023 World Championships, placing eighth.

2022 Olympian, Farquharson, of Park City, Utah, who hit a career-high fourth in the Park City Sprint, also made the team. 2023 Norton Junior National Championship silver medalist Elana Morrison, of Twin Lake, Michigan, qualified as a graduating junior.

Men’s singles

West, a World Cup gold medalist and three-time Olympian, will return for his tenth World Cup tour following a consistent season where he placed 10th in the overall rankings. West, of Ridgefield, Connecticut, also helped earn three medals for Team USA in the team relay competition.

2022 Olympian Jonny Gustafson, of Massena, will continue to chase after the podium following a career-best fourth-place result in the men’s sprint in Park City last year. Notably, Gustafson also placed sixth in Igls, Austria in the World Cup event.

2018 Olympic silver medalist Chris Mazdzer, of Park City, Utah and formerly of Saranac Lake, also qualified for the team after racing a limited schedule in the fall of 2022. Graduating junior Hunter Harris, of East Fairfield, Vermont, will round out the team. Harris’ top performance last season was the 2023 Junior World Cup in Altenberg, Germany where he placed sixth.

Men’s doubles

Following a season of considerable improvement, DiGregorio and Hollander will be joined by the duo of Dana Kellogg and Frank Ike representing Team USA in men’s doubles.

In 2022, DiGregorio, of Medway, Massachusetts, and Hollander, of Lake Placid, took the gold medal in the U23 World Championships and earned their first Olympic appearance at the Olympic Winter Games in Beijing where they placed 11th in doubles and seventh in the team relay. The team also posted a World Cup career-best fourth place in Park City and anchored Team USA in all three medal-winning relay performances.

Kellogg, of Chesterfield, Massachusetts, raced with Duncan Segger, of Lake Placid, since the 2016-17 season. Kellogg has now teamed with Junior National Team athlete Frank Ike, of Lititz, Pennsylvania, who raced with Aidan Mueller, of West Islip, in the Junior World Cup last season. That duo ranked seventh in the overall junior rankings. Mueller will continue his career in men’s singles as Ike steps up to the National Team with Kellogg.

Women’s doubles

After their first season competing on the World Cup tour, the women’s doubles teams of Chevonne Forgan and Sophia Kirkby will join Maya Chan and Reannyn Weiler and the duo of Britcher and Sweeney on the national team.

2022 World Championship bronze medalists Forgan, of Chelmsford, Massachusetts, and Kirkby, of Ray Brook, hope to continue their success following a silver medal at the World Cup in Sigulda, Latvia last season. Chan, of Chicago, Illinois, and Weiler, of Whitesboro, will return after placing seventh in the overall World Cup standings.

Following their first-year racing as a doubles team, Britcher and Sweeney have also been named to the team. The duo placed ninth overall in their first season of doubles racing, despite only competing in the first three events of the season.

The nine-circuit World Cup season will kick off in North America from Dec. 8-10, 2023, in Lake Placid, with the World Championship scheduled for Jan. 27-28, 2024, in Altenberg, Germany.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper? *

Starting at $4.75/week.

Subscribe Today