Nations Cup sets the stage for first EBERSPÄCHER Luge World Cup of the season

West, Farquharson take gold in respective disciplines 


LAKE PLACID, N.Y. –For the first time since 2019, Mt. Van Hoevenberg in Lake Placid saw world-class luge racing today during the Nation’s Cup qualifying races to set the stage for the EBERSPÄCHER Luge World Cup this weekend.  


The Nation’s Cup is a single run race to qualify athletes for the World Cup. Based on today’s results, all U.S. National Team athletes will be moving onto this weekend’s events.  


Current track record holder and three-time Olympian Tucker West (Ridgefield, Conn.) had the fastest start and finish times of the heat. He stopped the clock at 51.124 seconds. Teammate and 2022 Olympian Jonny Gustafson took silver in 51.488 and Australia’s Alexander Ferlazzo placed third in 51.489. 2018 Olympic silver medalist Chris Mazdzer (Salt Lake City, Utah) just missed the podium, placing fourth in 51.595. Mazdzer is competing in the final race of his storied career this weekend. 


2022 Olympian and the reigning Norton National Champion Ashley Farquharson topped the women’s singles competition, winning gold with a time of 44.242. Canada’s Trinity Ellis took silver in 44.336, and three-time Olympian Summer Britcher (Glen Rock, Pa.) placed third in 44.477.  


The U.S. men’s doubles team of Dana Kellogg (Chesterfield, Mass.) and Frank Ike (Lititz, Pa) placed fourth with a time of 44.241. The winners were Thomas Steu and Wolfgang Kindl of Austria with a time of 43.803, with Italy’s Ivan Nagler and Fabian Malleier taking silver in 44.167. Their teammates Ludwig Rieder and Lukas Gufler placed third in 44.176. 


As women’s doubles is making its debut at Mt. Van Hoevenberg, start and track records were set by first place finishers Germany’s Dajana Eitberger and Saskia Schirmer, with a start of 6.491 and track record of 44.425. Placing second was Ukraine’s Olena Stetskiv and Oleksandra Mokh in 45.812, and the Czeck Republic’s Anna Cezikova and Lucie Jansova taking bronze in 46.068.


Emily Sweeney (Lake Placid, N.Y.) and the doubles teams of Zack DiGregorio (Medway, Mass.) and Sean Hollander (Lake Placid), Chevonne Forgan (Chelmsford, Mass.) and Sophie Kirkby (Ray Brook, N.Y.), and Maya Chan (Chicago, Ill.) and Reanynn Weiler (Whitesboro, N.Y.) did not compete in today’s race as they previously qualified for the race based on last season’s overall World Cup rankings.  


Britteny Arndt, who announced she is retiring from the sport earlier this year, took her farewell run during the Nation’s Cup. The 2023 World Cup Sprint bronze medalist crossed the finish line in seventh place in 44.763. Arndt (Park City, Utah) was met with cheers from teammates and luge fans.  


“I got to end my career after a really great season last year and I’m happy to be able to be here in Lake Placid to take my last run with my friends, my family and the team here by my side,” said Arndt. “We are a big family and I’m really thankful for everyone on the team, my coaches and everyone who helped me get to where I got.”