Featured: Weston wins World silver

Featured: Weston wins World silver

Matt Weston became just the second British Skeleton slider to win multiple World Championship medals as he took silver in Winterberg on Friday afternoon.

Weston won the World title in St Moritz last season as the country celebrated its first men’s or women’s World Championship crown since Lizzy Yarnold won in Winterberg nine years ago and the 26-year-old now joins Yarnold as the only Brit to have made the global podium more than once.

Weston missed out on back-to-back titles to Germany’s reigning Olympic Champion, Christopher Grotheer, by 0.23 seconds but finished a huge 0.78 seconds clear of China’s Zheng Yin in third in a four-tun time of 3 minutes 45.14 seconds.

The former taekwondo and rugby player was just 0.04 seconds behind Grotheeer at the halfway stage overnight but the German pulled away in Run 3, leaving Weston with too much time to make up in the fourth and final heat. Weston becomes the only Brit to win medals at successive World Championships (Yarnold’s gold and two bronze came in 2012, 2015 and 2017). 

“I’m gutted, to be honest, but I guess that shows how far I’ve come as a slider and how far we’ve come as a team,” said Weston, who saw team-mate Marcus Wyatt miss a medal by just 0.01 seconds.

Winning a silver medal at the World Championships is still a great achievement but it’s just not the colour medal I wanted. I desperately wanted to retain my title but, fair play to Grotheer, he was outstanding today.

“I’ve still got a lot to be proud of, though, and it’s nice to have made a bit of British history by winning back-to-back medals. Standing on that podium is still a very special feeling.

“I really feel for Marcus. His fourth run was incredible and to miss bronze by a hundredth is pretty heartbreaking, especially when the same thing happened to Craig (Thompson) last year.

“It’s been another good day for our team as a whole. For all five of us in both the men’s and women’s races to finish in the top eight is incredible, really. It bodes well for tomorrow’s team race & for the rest of this Olympic cycle.”

RXWB 4022

Matt Weston made history in Winterberg

Fellow Brit Wyatt came agonisingly close to a medal, finishing just one hundredth of a second behind Yin, the winner of the two most recent World Cup races in Sigulda and Lillehammer.

Wyatt won European Championship gold in Latvia earlier this month and he came within a whisker of medalling on an even bigger stage as he set a track record, coming down in 55.26 seconds to move clear of Axel Jungk after he and the German had shared fourth spot after three runs.

The 32-year-old is the second Brit in as many years to miss a medal by the narrowest of margins after Craig Thompson suffered the same fate in St Moritz.

Thompson maintained his overnight position of eighth this season, jumping up a spot after Run 3 but dropping back one following Run 4. The former footballer clocked 3.46.65, finishing eight hundredths off the top six and 0.05 from seventh.

Earlier in the day, Tabby Stoecker finished fourth and Amelia Coltman sixth in the women’s race - the first time Great Britain have had two women in the top six at a World Championships since 2013. It means all five of the British team finished in the top eight despite the men’s and women’s fields featuring 30 and 27 sleds respectively.

There is a further chance of medals tomorrow afternoon when GB will have two teams in the Mixed Team event scheduled for 4pm GMT.

This year’s World Championships take place in Winterberg, Germany from February 22nd - March 3rd, with the schedule as follows:

Thurs 22 Feb
Women's Skeleton Heats 1&2 9am
Men's Skeleton Heats 1&2 1pm

Fri 23 Feb
Women's Skeleton Heats 3&4 11am
Men's Skeleton Heats 3&4 3pm

Sat 24 Feb
Women's Monobob Heats 1&2 8am
2-man Bobsleigh Heats 1&2 12pm
Skeleton Mixed Team Competition 4pm

Sun 25 Feb
Women's Monobob Heats 3&4 8.15am
2-man Bobsleigh Heats 3&4 12.15pm

Fri 1 Mar
Women's Bobsleigh Heats 1&2 2pm

Sat 2 Mar
4-man Bobsleigh Heats 1&2 9am
Women's Bobsleigh Heats 3&4 1.30pm

Sun 3 Mar
4-man Bobsleigh Heats 3&4 1pm

All races will be shown live on the IBSF YouTube channel and website