Luge pair chase World Cup

Central Otago Mirror - - SPORT -

Naseby teenager Josh Fogo is in Europe to com­pete in the Nat­u­ral Track Luge World Cup se­ries. The 15-year-old John McGlashan Col­lege stu­dent and his 16-year-old train­ing part­ner, Jack Leslie, of Christchurch, pre­pared on the Naseby Luge Track dur­ing the south­ern hemi­sphere win­ter and spent four weeks train­ing and com­pet­ing in Italy and Aus­tria in Jan­uary where Fogo fin­ished 35th in a field of 50 rac­ers at the world cham­pi­onships. On their lat­est trip they com­pete in four World Cup races in Italy and Aus­tria be­tween Jan­uary 4 and 26. They will train and com­pete as part of an In­ter­na­tional Luge Fed­er­a­tion de­vel­op­ment pro­gramme and will com­pete against the best in the sport in­clud­ing Ital­ian world cham­pion Pa­trick Pigneter and Pol­ish cham­pion Adam Je­drze­jko who coached at Naseby in 2012 and 2013. Pigneter has al­ready won the first world cup of the sea­son in Rus­sia with Je­drze­jko 14th. New Zealand Luge pres­i­dent Ge­off Balme said sup­port from the in­ter­na­tional body made it pos­si­ble for the young men to at­tend. ‘‘While unco-op­er­a­tive weather meant we didn’t have a very good sea­son in New Zealand this year, I’m sure once Leslie and Fogo are lug­ing ev­ery day on the best Euro­pean tracks they will quickly get back up to speed.’’ Nat­u­ral Track Luge takes place on tracks con­structed in nat­u­ral moun­tain ter­rain with­out the ar­ti­fi­cially el­e­vated curves and re­frig­er­a­tion of Olympic luge tracks. World Cup events are held ev­ery year and World Cham­pi­onships ev­ery sec­ond year.

Photo: FIL/SOBE

Nat­u­ral tal­ent: Naseby teenager Josh Fogo is in Europe to com­pete in the Nat­u­ral Track Luge World Cup se­ries.

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