NZOLA..........Naseby Ice Luge

New Zealand Olympic Luge Association, Ice Track: Naseby

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The Naseby connection at the Winter Youth Olympic Games

Posted by lugenz on January 23, 2012 at 9:55 AM Comments comments (0)

L to R Geoff Balme (Luge Coach), Matheson Hill (Luge), Liz Matthews (Curling Manager), David Weyer (Curling), Eleanor Adviento (Curling), Luke Steele (Curling), Kelsi Heath (Curling) & Peter Becker (Curling Coach).

Winter Youth Olympic Games - Luge wrap

Posted by lugenz on January 23, 2012 at 9:55 AM Comments comments (0)

We had two extra days of luge training today as many of the luge athletes are going on to another Junior World Cup next week so we had the opportunity to train on 19 and 20 January. In his final two post competition training runs on Friday Matheson was able achieve something he had been trying to do for some time, i.e. two consistent runs in one session, be it training or a race, and he probably got as close to the best time in a session as he had ever done. He posted times of 42.106 and 42.353. The best time of the session were 41.024 and 40.774 posted by the Latvian Rikis Rozitis who was 2nd in the men's race. A great way to finish! Here is what we think is the best shot of Matheson at the Games.

Winter Youth Olympic Games - Team Relay

Posted by lugenz on January 23, 2012 at 9:50 AM Comments comments (0)

Team USA ensured that German speaking luge countries (Austria, Germany and Italy) didn't take all the luge gold medals by defeating Germany (2nd) and Austria (3rd) in today's Team Relay. The relay event, each team has a women, men and doubles sled with time running until all three sleds have completed their runs, took place for the first time in Olympic competition as a precursor to its inclusion in the 2014 Sochi Olympic Winter Games.

Winter Youth Olympic Games - Women's & Doubles Luge

Posted by lugenz on January 23, 2012 at 9:50 AM Comments comments (0)

It was another beautiful but cold day (high of minus -8 at the luge track for the women's and doubles competitions. In two exciting races host's Austria (Miriam-Stefanie Kastlunger) won the women's from Saskia Langer of Germany and Ulla Zerne of Latvia while Italy (Florian Gruber/Simon Kainzwalder) won the doubles from Germany (Tim Brendl/Florian Funk) and USA (Ty Andersen/Pat Edmunds).

For our ...train spotter, you know who you are, in the women's race there were three daughters of past international luge athletes. Russian Victoria Demchenko's father Albert, Olympic silver in 2006, is still competing and plans to compete at home in Sochi in 2014. Austrian Nina Prock's father Markus is a luge great winning three Olympic medals (silvers in 1992 & 1994 and a bronze in 2002) and numerous World Championships and World Cup titles. USA's Raychel Germaine's father Bob qualified for the 1988 Olympics in doubles but was unable to compete when his doubles partner got injured.

Winter Youth Olympic Games - 15 January (Take 2)

Posted by lugenz on January 16, 2012 at 12:20 AM Comments comments (1)

Matheson Hill has finished 25th in the 1st Winter Youth Olympic Games luge competition. A mistake at the end of the large Kreisel curve cost an unwanted 1.5 seconds in his 1st run and was costly from an overall point of view. Despite setting a personal best time on his 2nd run Matheson was consigned to last place in a field representing 18 nations. Australia's Alex Ferlazzo,... who started his luge career at Naseby and trained with Matheson and the other NZ boys in North America and Austria in November and December, finished 19th.

The race was won by Christian Paffe of Germany (2 run combined time of 1 minute 19.603 seconds) with Rikis Rozitis of Latvia 2nd (1.19.806) and another German Toni Graefe 3rd (1.19.920). Matheson was 4.431 seconds behind with a comnined time of 1.24.034. On his 2nd run Matheson had a personal best time of 41.357 seconds, only 1.491 behind the leader and reached a top speed of 106.9kph.

Tomorrow the women's and doubles races take place followed by the team event on Tuesday. While our competition is now over we will watch the remaining luge races, attend other competitions to support the rest of our kiwi team mates (skiing, snowboarding, hockey and curling) and have tickets to the curling and hockey finals later in the week.

Matheson and Geoff following today's luge race.

Winter Youth Olympic Games - 15 Jan (Take 1)

Posted by lugenz on January 15, 2012 at 2:20 AM Comments comments (0)

The big day is here for Matheson Hill, the luge competition at the 1st ever Winter Youth Olympic Games at Innsbruck/Austria. After four winters of luging at Naseby and two overseas trips Matheson now steps onto the world stage to represent all of us at Naseby Luge and to highlight the opportunity that exists for those who become part of Naseby Luge. Just like our races in Naseby the competition will have two heats, beginning at 2pm local time. Below is Matheson in his new race suit especially for the WYOG. Matheson has trained well this week and I am confident that he will make himself, his family and all of us at Naseby Luge extremely proud. GO MATHESON!

Winter Youth Olympic Games

Posted by lugenz on January 14, 2012 at 4:40 PM Comments comments (0)

Go to http://www.innsbruck2012.com/en for photos and stories.

Winter Youth Olympic Games - 14 January

Posted by lugenz on January 14, 2012 at 4:30 PM Comments comments (0)

Matheson Hill had his final three official training runs today placing 14th twice and 15th in his training group. On faster ice, it was cooler overnight and there was no more snow, Matheson improved his best time to 43.211 seconds to 41.856 seconds and his top speed from 101.4kph to 105.3kph. He is starter number 22 in tomorrow's field of 25 racers. Matheson readying himself at the start before one of today's training runs.

 

Winter Youth Olympic Games - Opening Ceremony

Posted by lugenz on January 14, 2012 at 4:25 PM Comments comments (0)

Last night's ceremony was awesome, a great mix of old and new/young that appealed to those of use who were around for the 1964 and 1976 Innsbruck Olympic Winter Games and the competitiors in these first Winter Youth Olympics who were not born until the 1990s. Below is a photo of our NZ athletes with Naseby Luge's Matheson Hill 2nd from the left looking towards the camera.

Olympic Luge Tracks - 1964 v 2012

Posted by lugenz on January 13, 2012 at 8:40 AM Comments comments (0)

Buried under the snow at Igls/Innsbruck Olympic Sliding Centre, the site of the luge, bobsleigh and skeleton at these 1st Winter Youth Olympic Games, are the remains of the track that was used for the 1964 Olympic Winter Games (OWG) sliding events. In 1964 the track wasn't refrigerated and it wasn't until the 1976 OWG, also at Innsbruck, that the Olympic sliding athletes first experienced a refrigerated track. The world's first refrigerated track was opened literally down the road in Konigssee/Germany in 1969. Prior to refrigeration the tracks were shaped out of snow and ice with corners often being made of bricks (see following picture) in which large ice blocks cut out of local lakes were packed and then shaped to provide safe profiles for the corners. With all the snow we have had the old track looks like it could be made operational if the refrigeration was to fail on the new track! The old unrefrigerated tracks were bumpy and nothing like the smooth tracks of today. And of course the speeds of today are much greater due to the condition of the track and the huge advancements in sled and equipment technology.


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