Kaillie Humphries and Lauren Gibbs of the United States of America have won the 2020 World Championships in the 2- woman bobsleigh. The 2010 and 2014 Olympic Champion, and her brakewoman Lauren Gibbs, celebrated the pilot’s third title. The win also marked Humphries first world championship as an American slider.
Kaillie Humphries won her first two World Championship titles (2012 and 2013) for Canada. Her World Championship gold in Altenberg is also the third for Team USA. Pilot Elana Meyers Taylor won the 2-woman bobsleigh title in 2015 and 2017.
Humphries was overcome with joy at the finish, saying “This is one of my top favourite tracks. I love Altenberg! It’s a very challenging track and demands a lot of focus and respect. This is worth all of the risk and I am so happy it worked!”
Securing the best result for the hosts, Junior World Champions Kim Kalicki/Kira Lipperheide finished 0.37 seconds behind the US pairing to take a World Championships silver medal. Kim Kalicki thus became the first Junior World Champion in the 2-woman bobsleigh to also win a World Championship medal in the same year.
It was clear which achievement mattered more though, with Kalicki saying “You can’t compare the silver medal to the Junior World Championship title, it’s a completely different ball game. We didn’t think anything like this could happen here. We managed four decent runs and showed what we were capable of.”
Christine De Bruin/Kristen Bujnowski of Canada equalled their performance from Whistler last year and finished third. Despite a poor second run yesterday, De Bruin/Bujnowski were able to bounce with a pair of quick runs today, and finish 1.06 seconds behind Humphries/Gibbs.
Consistency may have been the key to their success, with De Bruin saying “We knew it’s gonna be a big battle. All are very competetive athletes. We just tried to be very consistent and to do the exact same things in every simgle run. And that’s what we did.”
The Olympic and defending World Champion Mariama Jamanka (GER), along with her brakewoman Annika Darzek, finished fourth. It was a disappointing day for the pair who went into the final heat in third place. Unfortunately they just couldn’t match the speed of De Bruin/Bujnowski, and were overtaken for the last spot on the podium.
The overall World Cup leader Stephanie Schneider (GER), racing with brakewoman Leonie Fiebig, finished fifth. It was another disappointing result from a much hyped German team. Schneider will have to take solace in her World Cup victory, as it is the only hardware she will head home with at the end of the season.
Schneider/Fiebig did manage to finish ahead of the current European Champions Nadezhda Sergeeva/Elena Mamedova (RUS) who claimed sixth. The Russians finished second on two separate runs, but suffered from a pair of slow runs that ultimately cost them any chance at a top-5 finish.
The best result for a 2-woman bobsleigh pairing from future Olympic hosts China, went to Qing Ying/Jiani Du in tenth. They will look for improved results as we move closer and closer to the 2022 Winter Olympics.
You can watch other events from the world championships on the IBSF’s YouTube channel, or on your television via your national broadcaster. To look at a detailed version of results visit www.ibsf.org. Totallympics Media will continue it’s coverage of the 2020 IBSF Bobsleigh and Skeleton World Championships tomorrow.