Top six for GB1 4-man crew

Top six for GB1 4-man crew

Great Britain finished sixth in the 4-man Bobsleigh at the World Championships on Sunday as Brad Hall, Leon Greenwood, Taylor Lawrence and Greg Cackett made the wider podium in Winterberg.

The GB1 crew maintained their overnight position in the final two runs but were unable to move into the top three and secure a second successive medal at the showpiece event of the season after their stunning silver in St Moritz 13 months ago.

Hall and co clocked a combined time of 3 minutes 35.7 seconds to finish 0.46 seconds clear of the Italian team in seventh and just 0.02 seconds shy of Austria’s Marcus Treichl in fifth.

Germany matched their clean sweep of the medals from both the 2-man and Women’s events as Francesco Friedrich took gold, Johannes Lochner silver and Adam Ammour bronze, with the latter finishing 0.39 seconds in front of Hall’s crew.

Friedrich celebrated his sixth straight 4-man World Championship title as he made it a double success this season following his triumph in last week’s 2-man competition, with Lochner finishing second and Ammour third as they swapped places from the 2-man race.

Hall, Lawrence, Cackett and Arran Gulliver won the country’s first World Championship 4-man medal for 84 years when they took that silver in Switzerland last season but they always faced an uphill task to medal again after injuries meant they were given a tough start draw for the first of the two days of competition.

With Hall having had back surgery in the autumn; Cackett suffering a severe hamstring tear in the summer; and Greenwood earning his spot after Gulliver missed much of the season with groin and hamstring problems, the team have had limited ice time this term and therefore started 17th of 22 sleds on Saturday’s first day of competition.

They sat eighth after the first run and went fourth fastest in Run 2, fifth fastest in Run 3 and sixth quickest in Run 4. They were the fifth fastest starters in Runs 1 and 2 and sixth quickest in Runs 3 and 4.

"We wanted a medal but it was always going to be tough after the injuries we’ve had this season," said Cackett.

"We’ve had so many disruptions since the summer but I’m proud of the way we stuck with it & battled through. For myself, I’m pleased that I could manage four rounds without incident after eight months dealing with the most severe injury of my career. 

Top six is still a decent result & it shows we’re not too far off even when things don’t go our way. 

"We still managed a top six push in each run despite the injuries and that says a lot about the character and the ability of all the boys. I’d like to shoutout Leon as well because he was debuting with an unfit crew but performed week in, week out at the top level. 

"I think we’ve got even stronger as a team this year & the aim is to be back in the medals at next year’s World Champs in Lake Placid."

Fellow Brits Adam Baird, Jens Hullah, Austin Millward and Calum Dixon finished 18th on their World Championship debuts, making the top 20 after three heats to secure a fourth and final run.

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GB2 were all making their World Championship debuts 

Pilot Baird only made his World Cup bow in January, while neither Hullah nor Dixon had represented GB prior to this season and Milward had never raced at any level before this weekend.

They registered a time of 3 minutes 38.40 seconds, holding their Day 1 position after dropping a spot in Run 3 but picking it up again in Run 4.

Baird and his crew finished just two hundredths shy of the second Austrian team in 17th and only four hundredths from the Dutch team in 16th.

There is one more top-tier race this season, with the final World Cup competition scheduled for March 21-23 in Lake Placid, USA.

World Championship results:

Women's Skeleton: Stoecker 4th; Coltman 6th
Men's Skeleton: Weston 2nd; Wyatt 4th; Thompson 8th
Skeleton Mixed Team Competition: Stoecker & Weston 2nd; Coltman & Wyatt 4th
Women's Monobob: Nicoll 9th
2-man Bobsleigh: Hall & Lawrence 4th; Stanbridge & Hullah 23rd
Women's Bobsleigh: Nicoll & Placide 11th
4-man Bobsleigh: Hall, Greenwood, Lawrence & Cackett 6th; Baird, Hullah, Milward & Dixon 18th