It was close, but veteran pilot Kaillie Humphries and rookie brakewoman Chelsea Valois kept their podium streak alive in Sochi, Russia, finishing the bobsleigh season with a bronze medal and a final tally of nine medals this season. They finished with six gold medals, including the world championship, plus two bronze and one silver.
Humphries' streak goes back even further, including wins the final four events — including the world championship — in the 2012 season while working with two different brakewomen.
“They weren’t the best runs,” said Humphries of her runs down the new track at Sochi. “I made a few mistakes, but I am still learning (the track). We are going to come back here again next year for international training week and work hard to clean things up.”
As for her streak, Humphries called it a team effort. “I am super happy with the season overall,” she said on Friday, Feb. 15. “We have some of the best sleds in the world with Eurotech, but our whole team is amazing. It is a great atmosphere on our team, and all of the athletes support and cheer for each other. When you have that around you, great things can happen.”
The win went to the first German sled piloted by Sandra Kiriasis, followed by the American sled and Elana Meyers. The Canada 2 sled, piloted by Jenny Ciochetti and aided by Kate O’Brien, placed sixth.
The men’s skeleton races also took place on Friday. John Fairbairn led the Canadian team in ninth, followed by Eric Neilson in 10th and Jon Montgomery in 12th. The win went to Lavtia’s Martins Dukurs, followed by Russia’s Alexander Tretjyakov and Germany’s Frank Rommel.
The action continues on Saturday with the men’s two-man bobsleigh and men’s skeleton, followed by the four-man bobsleigh on Sunday.