Sportsnet

Rogers Media

Canada’s Justin Kripps takes silver in four-man bobsled at World Cup

IGLS, Austria — Justin Kripps piloted his Canadian four-man bobsled to the silver medal on Sunday at the final World Cup before the holiday break.

Kripps, of Summerland, B.C., and his newly-formed crew of Alex Kopacz of London, Ont., Jesse Lumsden of Burlington, Ont., and Seyi Smith of Ottawa slid to a second-place time of one minute 42.60 seconds for their first medal together since joining forces at the third race of the season in Whistler, B.C.

"With this crew, I know we have the starts to contend and it really shows on a starters track like Igls," said the 30-year-old Kripps, who along with Lumsden also won the silver in Saturday’s two-man race.

"It was a great weekend for us here in Igls. The boys stepped up big in the starts and coming away with medals in both races is huge. What a great way to go into the Christmas break."

Sitting in third spot after the first decent down the flat 14-corner track, Kripps shaved off .04 to post a final heat start time at 4.96.

Germany’s Johannes Lochner, Marc Rademacher, Joshua Bluhm and Christian Rasp won gold with a time of 1:42.45. Francesco Friedrich, Candy Bauer, Martin Grothkopp and Thorsten Margis, also of Germany, took bronze at 1:42.65.

It was the first time in Kripps’ career as a pilot that he has won medals in both race disciplines on the same weekend.

Kripps has doubled his career medal count with five medals in the first half of the season, bringing his total to 10 as a pilot, including his second-place two-man finish at last year’s World Championships. The silver on Sunday was just his third career four-man medal. He also won a four-man silver earlier this year in Park City with a different crew.

Calgary’s Chris Spring, who has three medals of his own this year, teamed up with Cam Stones of Whitby, Ont., Josh Kirkpatrick of London, Ont., and Neville Wright of Edmonton, to place 13th with a time of 1:43.29.

Hamilton’s Nick Poloniato, who had his first-career World Cup medal taken back following a ruling by the IBSF jury in Saturday’s sled inspection, finished 16th with his team of Derek Plug of Calgary, Lascelles Brown of Calgary and Ben Coakwell of Saskatoon.

Kripps, who is leading the overall World Cup standings in the two-man, moved into third place in the four-man standings.