Canada’s Mellisa Hollingsworth Wins World Cup Silver Medal at Skeleton Temple in St. Moritz
January 28, 2011
ST. MORITZ, Sui.—Canada’s Mellisa Hollingsworthslid to a World Cup silver medal at the birthplace of the sport in St. Moritz,Switzerland on Friday.
The30-year-old Hollingsworth, who also won a silver medal at the season-opener inWhistler, B.C. and a bronze two weeks ago in Igls, Austria, had one of the besttwo-run performances of the year en route to capturing the 26th medal of herWorld Cup career. The 2006 Olympic bronze medallist, of Eckville, Alta.,clocked a combined time of two minutes, 19.41 seconds on the legendary Swisstrack.
“YesterdayI made a mistake coming into horseshoe and I was lucky to stay on my sled andthat was a great lesson to learn coming into this race,” said Hollingsworth.“That’s what we do as athletes is we try to find the fastest line so it wasgood to learn from yesterday and I think that helped. I’m happy with how thingsturned out.”
Hollingsworthwas joined on the podium by Shelley Rudman, of Great Britain, who posted agolden time of 2:19.17, while Germany’s Anja Huber won the bronze with a timeof 2:19.43.
Allsports boast historic facilities and playing fields that athletes dream of havingan opportunity to compete on. For skeleton and Hollingsworth, such a place isSt. Moritz. The only non-refrigerated track in the world, St. Moritz is1,700-metres of natural stunning beauty as the track winds its way to thefinish in the town of Celerina.
Havingplayed host to the 1928 and 1948 Olympic Winter Games, Hollingsworth has hadgreat success at the skeleton temple. The two-time Overall World Cup championhas five silver medals (2011, 2010, 2009, 2006, 2003) and one bronze in 2008 atSt. Moritz.
“It issuch a privilege to slide here. I said that word to myself as I put my sleddown on the start line and I think when you have that mindset it puts you in agood place,” said Hollingsworth, who led after the first run the last two yearsso was hoping for a different outcome today. “It is such a long, drivers track.If you are a good driver you can make up time, but if you make a mistake it shows.It really is a special place.”
Hollingsworthwasn’t the only Canadian to shine on Friday as the Canadian women’s and men’ssquad had a historic day of sorts with all six athletes sliding into thetop-10.
World Cuprookie, Darla Deschamps of Calgary, continued her stellar run by finishing infourth spot for the second straight week with a time of 2:19.61. A winner offour medals on the Intercontinental Cup prior to the holiday break beforegetting the call to slide with the world’s best, the 29-year-old Deschamps hastwo fourths and a fifth-place finish in just three races. Amy Gough, ofAbbotsford, B.C., followed up a bronze-medal finish last week with aneighth-place result in St. Moritz after stopping the clock at 2:20.18.
TheCanadian men got the ball rolling earlier in the day with their best teamfinish of the season. Toronto’s Mike Douglas led the Canadian charge with histop result of the post-Olympic season. The 2010 Olympian placed sixth with atime of 2:17.87. Olympic gold medallist, Jon Montgomery of Russell, Man., waseighth at 2:18.12, while Calgary’s John Fairbairn had his career-best result in10th at 2:18.37.
“That isthe best team result for sure and our dynamics are so good right now,” saidHollingsworth following the medal ceremony. “Everyone is working so welltogether. We sit down together and review corner-by-corner after every run andwe are all learning from each other. It is such a comfortable, trustingenvironment that is breeding success.”
Latvia’sMartins Dukurs locked up the Overall World Cup title with a golden day inSwitzerland. Dukurs clocked a winning time of 2:16.54. Germany’s Frank Rommelwas second at 2:16.89, while Ben Sandford, of New Zealand, slid to the bronzemedal spot on the podium at 2:17.34.
The WorldCup continues on Saturday in St. Moritz with men’s and women’s bobsleighaction.
BobsleighCANADA Skeleton is a non-profit organization and the national governing bodyfor the sports of bobsleigh and skeleton in Canada. With the support of itsvalued corporate partners - VISA, Dow Chemical, Adidas, Schenker Canada - alongwith the Government of Canada, Canadian Olympic Committee and Own the Podium,Bobsleigh CANADA Skeleton develops Olympic and world champions. Please visit usat www.bobsleighcanadaskeleton.ca
Complete Results: www.fibt.com
Top-Five Women’s Skeleton Results:
1.Shelley Rudman, GBR, 2:19.17; 2. Mellisa Hollingsworth, Eckville, Alta., CAN,2:19.41; 3. Anja Huber, GER, 2:19.43; 4. Darla Deschamps, Calgary, CAN,2:19.61; 5. Katie Uhlaender, USA, 2:19.83.
8.Amy Gough, Abbotsford, B.C., 2:20.18.
Top-Five Men’s Results:
1.Martins Dukurs, LAT, 2:16.54; 2. Frank Rommel, GER, 2:16.89; 3. Ben Sandford,NZL, 2:17.34; 4. Sandro Stielicke, GER, 2:17.59; 5. John Daly, USA, 2:17.78
6.Mike Douglas, Toronto, 2:17.87; 8. Jon Montgomery, Russell, Man., 2:18.12; 10.John Fairbairn, Calgary, 2:18.37