Germany’s “Tobis” top Austrian brothers for doubles luge gold


Two lugers with the same first name beat two lugers with the same last name for the doubles’ luge gold medal today at Sanki Sliding Center.

World Cup champions Tobias Wendl and Tobias Arlt of Germany, often referred to as “The Tobis,” became the first doubles team from their country to win gold since Patric Leitner and Alexander Resch did it in 2002.

Coming away with silver were the brothers Linger, Andreas and Wolfgang, who had come into Sochi as the two-time defending Olympic champions.

Wendl and Arlt posted a time of 49.650 seconds on their second and final run to cap off the win over the Austrian siblings by .522 of a second on aggregate time.

MORE: Shani Davis finishes 8th in 1000m; Netherlands’ Groothuis wins

Another set of brothers, Andris and Juris Sics of Latvia, followed up their 2010 silver with a bronze today; overall, they were .857 of a second behind Wendl and Arlt.

The Americans were led by Christian Niccum and Jayson Terdiman, who finished 11th at just over two seconds back of the winners. A second U.S. duo, Matthew Mortensen and Preston Griffall, was 14th.

The luge competition for the Sochi Olympics ends tomorrow with the debut of the team relay competition, in which a woman, a man, and a doubles team race one after the other from the same start point.

The riders of both the women’s and men’s sled must hit an overhead touch pad to release the starting gate for the next leg. Timing is continuous, and the nation with the lowest time after the third sled wins.

1. Tobias Wendl/Tobias Arlt (GER), 1:38:933
2. Andreas Linger/Wolfgang Linger (AUT), 1:39.455
3. Andris Sics/Juris Sics (LAT), 1:39.790

11. Christian Niccum/Jayson Terdiman (USA), 1:40.945
14. Matthew Mortensen/Preston Griffall (USA), 1:41.703

Olympian Derrick Mein ends U.S. men’s trap drought at shotgun worlds

Derrick Mein

Tokyo Olympian Derrick Mein became the first U.S. male shooter to win a world title in the trap event since 1966, prevailing at the world shotgun championships in Osijek, Croatia, on Wednesday.

Mein, who grew up on a small farm in Southeast Kansas, hunting deer and quail, nearly squandered a place in the final when he missed his last three shots in the semifinal round after hitting his first 22. He rallied in a sudden-death shoot-off for the last spot in the final by hitting all five of his targets.

He hit 33 of 34 targets in the final to win by two over Brit Nathan Hales with one round to spare.

The last U.S. man to win an Olympic trap title was Donald Haldeman in 1976.

Mein, 37, was 24th in his Olympic debut in Tokyo (and placed 13th with Kayle Browning in the mixed-gender team event).

The U.S. swept the Tokyo golds in the other shotgun event — skeet — with Vincent Hancock and Amber English. Browning took silver in women’s trap.

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Mo Farah withdraws before London Marathon

Mo Farah

British track legend Mo Farah withdrew before Sunday’s London Marathon, citing a right hip injury before what would have been his first 26.2-mile race in nearly two years.

Farah, who swept the 2012 and 2016 Olympic track titles at 5000m and 10,000m, said he hoped “to be back out there” next April, when the London Marathon returns to its traditional month after COVID moved it to the fall for three consecutive years. Farah turns 40 on March 23.

“I’ve been training really hard over the past few months and I’d got myself back into good shape and was feeling pretty optimistic about being able to put in a good performance,” in London, Farah said in a press release. “However, over the past 10 days I’ve been feeling pain and tightness in my right hip. I’ve had extensive physio and treatment and done everything I can to be on the start line, but it hasn’t improved enough to compete on Sunday.”

Farah switched from the track to the marathon after the 2017 World Championships and won the 2018 Chicago Marathon in a then-European record time of 2:05:11. Belgium’s Bashir Abdi now holds the record at 2:03:36.

Farah returned to the track in a failed bid to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics, then shifted back to the roads.

Sunday’s London Marathon men’s race is headlined by Ethiopians Kenenisa Bekele and Birhanu Legese, the second- and third-fastest marathoners in history.

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