Canada’s Cynthia Appiah Slides to Sixth at Monobob World Championships in St. Moritz
ST. MORITZ, Sui.—Both of Canada’s women’s monobob sleds bombed into the top-10 at the World Championships on Sunday in St. Moritz, SUI.
Toronto’s Cynthia Appiah slid to sixth place in her second trip to the historic track as a pilot while Calgary’s Bianca Ribi locked up ninth spot after navigating the 1,700-metre naturally refrigerated sheet of ice for the first time at the elite level.
Appiah, who sits third overall in the World Cup monobob standings, was in the medal fight through each of the four World Championship runs held over the last two days.
“Overall, I’m happy with my performance, but I really wanted to capitalize on my bronze medal from last year’s monobob race in St. Moritz,” said Appiah, who has three podium finishes this year in the relatively new sliding sport discipline.
“The track was a little trickier than last year and my mistakes cost me dearly. That being said, I’m happy to have had a top-six finish.”
The 2022 Olympian rocketed off the start block with top start times in the final two heats, and one-hundredth off a new track start record with a 5.78 time in the third run.
“It’s always fun to compete at St. Moritz. You can never pass up the opportunity to slide on such a historic track,” added Appiah. “The views are breathtaking, and the vibe is just amped up.”
Another Canadian was feeling it on the sacred piece of ice that snakes its way to the finish in the town of Celerina.
First year World Cup pilot, Bianca Ribi, demonstrated her potential with a solid ninth-place finish in her first trip to the premier international bobsleigh dance in a non-Olympic year.
Ribi clocked a four-run combined time of 4:48.41.
“I’m incredibly proud of my performance,” said the 26-year-old former elite soccer player. “I was improving every run, and I am absolutely thrilled to be able to compete and finish in the top-10 against such a strong field. I’m looking forward to taking this confidence into next weekend and hopefully improving on my placement.
Ribi stormed onto the World Cup scene this year, winning her first monobob race on home ice at the season-opener this year in Whistler, B.C. Building on the breakthrough performance, she continues to develop on tracks around the world.
“St. Moritz is unlike any track in the world. You can feel how special of a place it is. I feel privileged that my first World Championship is at the birthplace of the bobsleigh. I’m having the time of my life.”
Germany’s Laura Nolte slid into the winner’s circle with a time of 4:44.85. American Kaillie Humphries was second at 4:45.25. Lisa Buckwitz, also of Germany, claimed the bronze with a time of 4:45.57.
Ottawa’s Pat Norton and Cyrus Gray (Duncan, B.C.) were the top Canadian sled in the two-man bobsleigh race.
Competing in their first World Championships, the Canadian duo progressed throughout each heat, highlighted by a ninth-place time in the third run.
Add up the four runs, and the Canadians had a total time of 4:25.79 for 16th spot.
Taylor Austin (Calgary) and Shaq Murray-Lawrence (Scarborough, Ont.) crashed in the second heat and did not finish.
Germany’s Johannes Lochner and Georg Fleischhauer were crowned World Champions in the two-man with a time of 4:21.84.
A skeleton mixed team competition capped off the opening week of competition at the World Championships.
Ottawa’s Mirela Rahneva and Calgary’s Blake Enzie teamed up for sixth place with a time of 2:25.98.
North Vancouver’s Jane Channell slid with Saskatoon’s Evan Neufeldt in his final skeleton race. The Canadian duo finished with an 11th-place time of 2:27.04.
MIXED SKELETON TEAM COMPETITION RESULTS:
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