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Germany’s Geisenberger wins World Cup luge in Lake Placid

December 16, 2017

Natalie Geisenberger of Germany celebrates after placing first in a World Cup luge event in Lake Placid, N.Y., on Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (AP Photo/Peter Morgan)

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. (AP) — Natalie Geisenberger always seems to struggle on training days at Mount Van Hoevenberg.

Race days, not so much.

The German great fought through snowy conditions Saturday to get her fourth luge victory this season. It was the 42nd career World Cup singles gold medal for Geisenberger, extending her series record.

“This win is a really great feeling,” Geisenberger said. “I had a hard time in training. It was not as I wished. I like the track, I like the challenge, but the challenge is not easy.”

Geisenberger now has six career wins on the Mount Van Hoevenberg track — tying the record set by Italian legend Armin Zoeggler. Later Saturday, the German doubles team of Toni Eggert and Sascha Benecken won a sprint World Cup race and that victory gave them six golds in Lake Placid.

Geisenberger is also now a nine-time Lake Placid medalist, one behind Zoeggler’s record. She finished two runs in 1 minute, 28.211 seconds.

Canada took silver and bronze in the women’s race, with Alex Gough second and Kimberley McRae third. Gough won two silvers on Saturday — she was also second in the women’s sprint race, where Germany’s Dajana Eitberger was the winner and Geisenberger took the bronze.

“I’ve grown to love this track,” Gough said. “It’s a lot of fun to slide on.”

Erin Hamlin was the top American finisher in both women’s races, placing fourth in the sprint and sixth in the women’s event. Hamlin is retiring after this season, so it was her final World Cup on her home track.

In the men’s sprint, Wolfgang Kindl of Austria won gold, followed by Johannes Ludwig of Germany and newly qualified Olympic-teamer Taylor Morris of the U.S.

Germany won four golds, one silver and a bronze out of the six races over the weekend. Canada won four medals (two silver, two bronze), Austria won three medals (one gold, two silver), and Russia (one gold, one silver) and the U.S. (two bronze) medaled twice. Latvia won a bronze.

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