De Bruin wins World Cup monobob gold on three-medal day for Canada

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  • Justin Kripps
    Canadian bobsledder

ALTENBERG, Germany — Christine de Bruin captured World Cup gold in the women's monobob to lead Canada on a three-medal day Saturday.

Cynthia Appiah was second in the women's monobob, while Justin Kripps and Cam Stones won bronze in the two-man event.

De Bruin. a 32-year-old from Stony Plain, Alta., earned her first ever World Cup gold with a time of one minute 59.96 seconds. The six-time World Cup medallist in the two-woman event was trailing Appiah after the first run by just 0.01 seconds.

"I'm still in shock," de Bruin said. "I thought for sure I would get my first win in the two-woman, not monobob, but it feels great and shows that we are right on track."

De Bruin improved her start time by 0.05 seconds on the final run and navigated the 17-corner, 1,413-metre track to victory.

"It's great to have Cynthia and Melissa (Lotholz) here on the World Cup," De Bruin said. "Both girls are phenomenal push athletes, and both raced with me before starting to drive in 2018. It's awesome to see them both develop into world class drivers now, and that has pushed me to be better as an athlete as well."

Kaillie Humphries, who won back-to-back Olympic gold for Canada and is now competing for the U.S., finished third.

The 31-year-old Appiah, who has two silvers and a bronze in her last three races, said a costly mistake near the bottom of the track cost her the gold on Saturday.

"I'm super happy to have won my third medal in a row, but super disappointed with my second run. Things started to snowball and despite fighting back in each corner, it wasn't enough to hold onto the lead,” said Appiah, who leads the overall World Cup standings in the monobob.

"I'm very confident that I can medal in every race. I know my starts are killer, and I can cash in on that advantage that I give myself if I put down two decent runs each race."

Lotholz, from Barrhead, Alta., was ninth.

In the two-man, Kripps, from Summerland, B.C., and Stones, from Whitby, Ont., were seventh after the first run, but the 34-year-old Kripps had the third-fastest push and almost flawless driving on the second run to finish third in 1:50.68.

"We didn't have the best draw going off 13th on the first run. The track frosted up a bit and I had a mistake at the bottom, but the second run was more even and we stepped up with a big push and a good drive," said Kripps.

It was the 19th career World Cup two-man medal for Kripps. Nine of them have come with the 29-year-old Stones in his sled since the two joined forces following the 2018 Olympics.

Francesco Friedrich and Thorsten Margis won the gold (1:50.37), while fellow Germans Christoph Hafer and Issam Ammour were second (1:50.59).

Chris Spring of Vancouver and Mike Evelyn of Ottawa were fourth.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 18, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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