Germany sweeps World Cup bobsled gold, Canadian women take bronze

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IGLS, Austria (AP) — Germany swept a pair of World Cup bobsled races Sunday, with Francesco Friedrich winning in the four-man race and Laura Nolte driving to the victory in the women’s event.

Canada's Christine de Bruin and Kristen Bujnowski broke up German domination of the women's race by taking bronze.

Germans Kim Kalicki and Anabel Galander earned silver.

De Bruin and Bujnowski edged Germans Mariama Jamanka and Kira Lipperheide and Kaillie Humphries and Sylvia Hoffman of the U.S. tied for fourth just a hundredth of a second back of the Canadians.

De Bruin of Stony Plain, Alta., credited powerful pushes by brakewoman Bujnowski of Mount Brydges, Ont., for a podium result.

“That race was all Buj,” De Bruin said in a Bobsleigh Canada Skeleton statement.

“She got us those start velocities and I just tried to keep the speed down the track.

“The last time we were here, we finished in fourth by a hundredth of a second and today we got third by the same margin."

The Canadian duo won bronze in last month's Olympic test event on Beijing's track.

Known as a starter’s track in the sliding sports world, the relatively flat 14-corner Austrian course puts a premium on powerful push starts.

“I’m not used to getting top start times, but I definitely won’t get tired of it,” said 29-year-old Bujnowski, who excelled at CrossFit before taking up bobsled.

“We had a couple of great pushes and impressive velocities, so I am really happy with that.

“The field is especially tacked right now, and I am pushing against so many brakewomen who are my idols, so it is awesome to stand among them.”

Britain's Brad Hall of Britain and Germany's Johannes Lochner of Germany shared the four-man silver medal with identical two-run times 0.26 seconds back of Friedrich.

Justin Kripps of Summerland, B.C., piloted Canada to sixth.

A costly mistake near the bottom of the track on their opening run had Kripps and crewman Ryan Sommer, Cam Stones and Ben Coakwell ranked 11th.

The Canadians climbed to sixth with the fourth-fastest second run.

The World Cup bobsled and skeleton tour remains in Igls for another series of races next weekend.

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The Associated Press

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