Canada falls just short of podium in World Cup bobsled opener

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IGLS, Austria (AP) — Canadians Justin Kripps and Cam Stones finished just off the podium in fourth in season-opening World Cup two-man bobsled Saturday.

Kripps of Summerland, B.C., and Stones from Whitby, Ont., were fifth after their opening run.

The Canadians finished one hundredth of a second back of bronze medallists Brad Hall and Greg Cackett of Britain after the second run.

Kripps piloted Canada to a tie for Olympic gold in 2018 in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

Germany's Francesco Friedrich, who shared gold with Kripps in South Korea, won Saturday's race with brakeman Alexander Schueller.

“I’m happy with this result because I haven’t had much success in the two-man here in Igls,” Kripps said in a Bobsleigh Canada Skelton statement.

“Knocking on the door of the podium is a good sign for us."

“I made more than .01 seconds of mistakes down the track so we’re definitely capable of hitting the podium if we clean it all up.”

Friedrich has finished no worse than second in any of his last 33 World Cup two-man races. He's won gold 26 times and silver in the other seven.

German teammates Johannes Lochner and Floridan Bauer were second Saturday.

Calgary's Chris Spring and Ottawa's Mike Evelyn finished eighth.

The United States claimed gold and silver in women's monobob with Elana Meyers Taylor and Kaillie Humphries first and second respectively.

Germany’s Laura Nolte was third.

Toronto Cynthia Appiah was just under a tenth of a second back of Nolte in fourth, and Edmonton's Melissa Lotholz finished fifth.

“Consistency will be the key for me to jump onto the podium,” Appiah added.

"My pushes are so dynamic that I can create insurmountable leads, but the consistency is what will secure the win.

"Things are still tracking in the right direction. I’m still learning and developing as a pilot, but I’m consistently in the top-10 which isn’t something many can say as a young driver.”

Women's monobob makes its Olympic debut in Beijing in February.

Racing continues Sunday with four-man and women's races.

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The Associated Press

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