Canada's McRae sees room for improvement despite a personal best at World Cup luge event

Kimberley McRae of Victoria placed sixth and posted a personal-best start time at a World Cup luge event in Winterberg, Germany on Saturday.

Canadian coach laments team's performance even with 3 top-10 finishes

Kimberley McRae settles for 6th in Winterberg

5 years ago
Duration 1:34
The Canadian finished sixth overall on Saturday at a FIL luge World Cup event in Winterberg, Germany.

Canada's Kimberley McRae placed sixth and posted a personal-best start time in the opening World Cup luge event in Winterberg, Germany on Saturday.

The 24-year-old's start time was 4.975 seconds, but the Victoria native completed the course in one minute, 51.79 seconds, well back of Germany's Natalie Geisenberger, who recorded the top time of 1:50.724.

Tatjana Huefner and Dajana Eitberger placed second and third to secure a sweep of the podium for the host country. 

Alex Gough of Calgary finished 10th. 

After the race, McRae saw some room for improvement. 

"I was very lucky today. I pulled two good starts but I had a rough ride on the way down. I was able to clean it up a bit in the second run, but I know I need to work on my consistency in training," McRae said. 

Eye-opener for Canada

Canadian team head coach Wolfgang Staudinger echoed McRae's thoughts, despite three top-10 finishes which also included a seventh-place result for the doubles tandem of Tristan Walker of Cochrane, Alta. and Calgary's Justin Snith.

"I believe this was a big eye opener for our team today. The World Cup is the best athletes in the world and does not allow for inconsistency or any margin for error if you want to be on the podium," he said. 

Staudinger acknowledged the bright spots on the day, but believes the team is capable of more. 

"There are lots of positive things happening, but we simply are not sliding to our full potential. The world is not standing still. We are here to win medals so if we want to compete with the best we need to push ourselves. I know what this team of athletes are capable of, but we must work harder and be more consistent."

Germany sweeps men's doubles

Walker and Snith climbed four spots after clocking the fourth-fastest final run time to place seventh in doubles, which also featured a German sweep of the podium. 

Snith also seemed to agree with his coach's assessment.

"We are disappointed for sure because we'd like to have two consistent runs," Snith said.

"Looking at the second run we were right in the game where we left off last year. We know we can be there on the podium, and should be there, but there is still time even in that second run that we can make up."

Toni Eggert and Sascha Benecken took gold with a time of 1:25.905, Robin Johannes Geueke and David Gamm were second at 1:26.287, while Tobias Wendl and Tobias Arlt had a third-place time of 1:26.426.