IGLS, Aut.—Struggling to find their way into the top-10 over the last month, Justin Kripps is bouncing back into elite form with the World Championships just around the corner.
Kripps, of Summerland, B.C., piloted his crew of Jesse Lumsden (Burlington, Ont), Alex Kopacz (London, Ont.), and Ben Coakwell (Saskatoon) into seventh place in the men’s four-man bobsleigh event at a World Cup in Igls, Austria on Sunday.
Team Kripps, who was sitting in sixth spot after their first trip down the 1,478 track, dropped one place when all was said and done, clocking a two-run time of 1:42.25.
“It’s really nice to be in the races again,” said Kripps. “We still need to work on the starts, but everything is starting to come together now at the right time.”
Latvia’s Oskars Melbardis and his crew of Daumants Dreiskens, Arvis Vilkaste, and Janis Strenga won the final four-man event before the World Championships take place in Konigssee, Germany. The Latvian’s posted a time of 1:42.01.
Switzerland’s Rico Peter, Simon Friedli, Alex Baumann, and Thomas Amrhein were second at 1:42.06. Steve Holcomb piloted his American team of Carlo Valdes, James Reed and Samuel McGuffie to a third-place time of 1:42.07.
Calgary’s Chris Spring drove his Canadian squad of Cam Stones (Hamilton), Josh Kirkpatrick (Calgary) and Neville Wright (Edmonton) to 16th at 1:42.57. World Cup rookie, Nick Poloniato (Hamilton) and his Calgary-based crew of Dan Sunderland, Derek Plug, and Keenan MacDougall, did not qualify for the second run with the top-20 after finishing 22nd.
Canada also fielded two all-women’s teams. Kaillie Humphries (Calgary), Melissa Lotholz (Barrhead, Alta.), Cynthia Appiah (Toronto) and Kasha Lee (Ottawa), were 29th. Alysia Rissling (Edmonton), Alecia Beckford-Stewart (Brampton, Ont.), Genevieve Thibault (Quebec City), and Sara Dagenais-Everell (Montreal) were 30th.
The Canadian Bobsleigh and Skeleton Teams will now have one week off before preparing for the World Championships which start, February 17th with the women’s bobsleigh event.