Humphries makes history, wins first-ever women’s monobob World Championships
ALTENBERG, Germany (Feb. 14, 2021) –Kaillie Humphries (Carlsbad, Calif.) made history by winning the first-ever women’s monobob World Championships in Altenberg today by half a second. Humphries is fresh off winning her fourth two-woman bobsled title last week, the most of any woman in history. Elana Meyers Taylor (Douglasville, Ga.) crashed in two of the four heats, but she still moved up to finish 15th.
“I’m ending on a high, and I really just continue to think about how grateful I am to be here, to represent the United States, and to compete,” Humphries said. “It’s such a huge honor. I’m so happy.”
Humphries was 0.04 seconds behind in second position going into today’s final runs. She took over the lead in today’s first heat with a start time of 6.21 seconds and downtime of 59.59 seconds, moving ahead of the competition by 0.16 seconds going into the finale.
Humphries threw down her best start time of the competition, 6.14, and set a new track record of 59.47 seconds to extend her lead to half a second. Humphries said she had trouble exiting corner nine, and wasn’t sure what number she was going to see next to her name at the finish.
“Heading into corner 15 I started to think, OK, this is possible,” Humphries said. “Then I was just waiting for the number one and hoped it’s there. That was one of my better runs. I saved the best for last, I guess. It’s been a battle this whole race and the Germans came out so strong. It forced me to focus on each and every run.”
Humphries saw the number one when she crossed the finish line. She won the first-ever women’s monobob World Championships with a four-run combined time of 3:59.62.
“This team has been so awesome,” Humphries said. “It was a team effort between Lolo (Jones), Lake (Kwaza), and Sylvia (Hoffman), who stayed and helped us, made sure we had every help possible. It’s absolutely amazing, I couldn’t have done it without the team.”
“Kaillie is one of the most accomplished and decorated bobsled pilots in history, and that’s why she’s bringing home two gold medals from worlds,” said USA Bobsled Head Coach Mike Kohn. “Her experience, patience, and talent helped her win this gold medal for Team USA.”
Germany claimed the silver and bronze medals. Stephanie Schneider was second with a combined time of 4:00.12, followed by Laura Nolte in third with an aggregate time of 4:00.42.
Meyers Taylor crashed in yesterday’s first heat, but she rebounded with a record breaking start and the ninth best time in the second heat. The three-time Olympic medalist clocked the second best start time of 6.05 seconds in today’s opening heat for the 10th fastest downtime of 1:00.42. She posted her best start time of the competition of 5.99 seconds in the fourth and final run, and despite hitting the entry to 12 and flipping at the exit, Meyers Taylor had built enough speed to gain a spot. She finished 15th with a four-run combined time of 4:05.44.
“I was really motivated by Elana today,” Humphries said. “She fought so hard to come back, right to the end.”
U.S. athletes will now travel to Park City, Utah for the start of team selection races for the 2021-2022 Olympic season.
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1. Kaillie Humphries (USA) 3:59.62 (1:00.39, 1:00.17, 59.59, 59.47);
2. Stephanie Schneider (GER) 4:00.12 (1:00.07, 1:00.45, 59.80, 59.80);
3. Laura Nolte (GER) 4:00.42 (1:00.00, 1:00.70, 59.61, 1:00.11);
15. Elana Meyers Taylor (USA) 4:05.44 (1:03.14, 1:00.94, 1:00.42, 1:00.94);
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USA Bobsled/Skeleton (USABS), based in Lake Placid, N.Y., is the national governing body for the sports of bobsled and skeleton in the United States. For more information, please visit the USABS website at www.usabs.com. Individuals interested in becoming a bobsled or skeleton athlete can visit www.usabobsledskeleton.com.