Team USA Headed to Park City World Cup
15 Jan, 2016
The bobsled and skeleton World Cup tour continues on home ice at the Utah Olympic Park in Park City, Utah this week. Fresh off a three gold medal haul in Lake Placid's event last week, Team USA has high hopes of carrying momentum into Park City's races. The 2002 Olympic track will host four of the five disciplines over two days of racing on Friday and Saturday and will feature two four-person bobsled competitions.
The detailed Park City World Cup schedule is outlined below, with race times listed in MT:
Friday, Jan. 15:
11 a.m.: Women's bobsled
6 p.m.: Four-person bobsled
Saturday, Jan. 16:
11 a.m.: Women's skeleton
12 p.m.: Men's skeleton
5 p.m.: Four-person bobsled
Competitions from Lake Placid are scheduled to air on Universal HD and live on NBC Sports Live Extra. Please check local listings to find the Universal HD channel in your area and for updated air times. Admission to the event is free and the venue will provide a fan festival for attendees on both days of racing.
Women's skeleton competitor Annie O'Shea (Port Jefferson Station, N.Y.) is still on a high after winning her first-career World Cup medal in Lake Placid, N.Y. last week. The 28-year-old veteran hopes to capitalize on home ice again in Park City this Saturday. World Cup newcomer Kendall Wesenberg (Modesto, Calif.) may turn some heads this weekend as the dark horse of the competition. Wesenberg burst onto the national scene last season by winning the Park City national team selection race before making her name known internationally after winning the first European Cup title by an American woman. Although Wesenberg is racing in only her first season on the World Cup team and is still becoming accustomed to the added pressure of the elite tour, she's historically performed well on her home track and can't be counted out for the medals.
Matt Antoine (Prairie du Chien, Wis.) displayed his driving skill in Lake Placid last week by accelerating down the track to a fifth place finish despite start times slower than his personal bests. Antoine was third the last time the tour stopped in Park City. Kyle Brown (Concord, N.H.) raced to a sixth place finish behind his teammate last weekend, and he now rejoins the Intercontinental Cup team in Europe for the final two events of the season. After racing in the Igls, Austria Intercontinental Cup, Nathan Crumpton (Colorado Springs, Colo.) flew to Park City to race as the second U.S. entrant in Saturday's men's skeleton World Cup.
Women's bobsled pilot Jamie Greubel Poser (Newtown, Pa.) is on a roll this season. The 2014 Olympic bronze medalist has medaled in all four World Cup races and was victorious in two events, including Lake Placid. Greubel Poster will team with Lauren Gibbs (Los Angeles, Calif.) this week in Under Armour's "Humble & Hungry" wrapped BMW-made sled.
Drivers Nicole Vogt (Dallas, Texas) and Brittany Reinbolt (Searcy, Ark.) made their World Cup debuts last weekend, and their push athletes for Park City, Malaikah Love (Carbondale, Ill.) and Sean Adigun (Houston, Texas), respectively, will make their debut on Friday. Vogt will again be driving the BMW wrapped sled, while Reinbolt will pilot the sled dedicated to the Aspen Institute's Project Play. Greubel Poser, Vogt and Reinbolt will try to repeat the women's performance from the last Park City World Cup in 2013, when the American women swept the medals.
Elana Meyers Taylor (Douglasville, Ga.) has been cleared to slide by a neurologist at the Cerebrum Health Center in Atlanta, Ga. following her rehabilitation and she will be racing on the European Cup circuit in Igls, Austria, site of the 2016 World Championships. In addition to competing in women's bobsled in the Igls race this weekend, she's also contemplating racing in the four-person competition with an all women's crew.
Men's bobsled driver Steven Holcomb (Park City, Utah) will once again team with Carlo Valdes (Newport Beach, Calif.), Frank Del Duca (Bethel, Maine) and Sam McGuffie (Cypress, Texas) in the Night Train 2 for the four-person races. Holcomb led a double victory in Park City's last World Cup event two seasons ago with his 2014 Olympic bronze medal team. Holcomb has been slightly hindered at the start with a quadriceps injury sustained earlier this season, but he'll gain some strength this week while racing in front of a hometown crowd.
Nick Cunningham (Monterey, Calif.) is scheduled to compete with his crew of Casey Wickline (Greenville, S.C.), James Reed (Garmisch, Germany) and Sam Michener (Gresham, Ore.) in the Classroom Champions four-person sled. Cunningham found success in 2013 with a silver medal performance in the two-man race, and he has his sights set on another medal finish this season.
Codie Bascue (Whitehall, N.Y.) will race with Austin Landis (Nashville, Tenn.), Nathan Gilsleider (Claremore, Okla.) and Nic Taylor (Hayward, Calif.) on Friday and a new crew combination of David Cremin (Annondale, Va.), Gilsleider and Hakeem Abdul-Saboor (Powhatan, Va.) on Saturday.
Para World Cup racing will continue on Jan. 15 and Jan. 16 in St. Moritz, Switzerland with para-bobsled and the event will be live-streamed at www.enjoystmoritz.ch. Former Team USA bobsled and skeleton competitor Bree Schaaf, who now coaches the para team and is an NBC Olympic commentator, will provide a play-by-play commentary for the event.
Intercontinental Cup athletes head to Koenigssee, Germany for races on Jan. 14 and Jan. 15. Koenigssee, Germany will mark the first stop of 2016 for the skeleton European Cup tour with racing on Jan. 14 and Jan. 15, while the bobsled portion of the tour will race in Igls, Austria on Jan. 15 and 16. The North American Cup will be on hiatus until Feb. 26. With qualification races completed, the Youth Olympic Games will commence on Feb. 10 in Lillehammer and run through Feb. 21.
Visit www.usabs.com for updates and results from the various tours. For media inquiries, please contact Amanda Bird, USABS Marketing & Communications Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or at (518) 354-2250. Get updates on the team by following USA Bobsled & Skeleton on Facebook, USBSF on Twitter and USABS on Instagram.
About USA Bobsled & Skeleton: USA Bobsled & Skeleton, based in Lake Placid, N.Y., is the national governing body for the sports of bobsled and skeleton in the United States. The USABS would like to thank its sponsors, suppliers and contributors for their support: BMW of North America, Under Armour, Kampgrounds of America, Boomerang Carnets, Park City Lodging, Inc., Classroom Champions, Aspen Institute's Project Play, EDAS/Ripxx, Tesa Tape, UberSense, Ferris Mfg. Corp, Protostar, Machintek and deBotech, Carpenter and PVS International. For more information, please visit the USABS website at www.usabs.com.