SKELETON: U.S. skeleton team posts three top-10 finishes in European Cup finale
Amanda Bird
(518) 523-1842
January 19, 2013 6:00 PM

Contact: Amanda Bird, USBSF Marketing & Communications Director
(518) 354-2250,

U.S. skeleton team posts three top-10 finishes in European Cup finale

ALTENBERG, Germany (Jan. 19, 2013) —The U.S. skeleton team posted three top-10 finishes in Altenberg, Germany to celebrate the conclusion of the European Cup tour. Savannah Graybill (Denver, Pa.) and Allen Blackwell (Jackson, Miss.) posted ninth place finishes today to wrap up two days of racing on the notoriously difficult track.


“It’s great to finish the season off with a top ten finish,” Blackwell said.  “I was thrown off my game with a minor wardrobe malfunction the first day, but I was able to improve my results today.”


Blackwell rebounded with a ninth place finish today after finishing 23rd yesterday.  Corner four proved tricky for Blackwell, but he posted some of the top speeds in the second men’s race.  Blackwell clocked a two-run total of 1:58.80 for his top-10 result.


Just days after racing in Altenberg for the first time in the Intercontinental Cup, Tom Santagato (Astoria, N.Y.) was back on course.  His combined time of 1:59.52 was 15th best of the field.


“It’s been a tough couple of weeks here in Altenberg,” Santagato said.  “Despite that, I feel like I’ve gotten better each day.  This track is definitely very difficult, but I am glad I got to spend a couple weeks here.  It’s definitely made me a better slider, and believe it or not, I can’t wait until I get to race here again.”


Greg West (Orange Beach, Ala.) raced today and had a much-improved second run to move him up six positions into 12th with a total time of 1:59.45.


Michael Zachrau claimed gold on his home track with a total time of 1:57.20 yesterday.  Canadian Paul Fraser moved up three spots in the second heat to secure silver with a total time of 1:57.54, while Colin Domke from Germany clocked a time of 1:57.77 for third.


Russian Pavel Kulikov was today’s winner with a total time of 1:56.55.  Canadian Charles Wlodarczak trailed by 0.22 seconds for second place, and Rusian Savitov from Russia was 0.47 seconds off the pace for third.


Annie O’Shea (Port Jefferson Station, N.Y.) led the women’s team in the first race with a 10th place finish after crossing the line in 2:02.70.  O’Shea continues her road of recovery since knee surgery last summer.


“This race helped me realize that I am slowly feeling like myself a little more each week on and off my sled,” O’Shea said.  “Every improvement is important for my rehab since knee surgery.”


Graybill finished 19th after a mishap during her second run, but she made a strong comeback today.  The second year slider threaded together clean runs for a combined time of 2:02.77 to finish ninth today.


Meghan Sullivan (Bluemont, Va.) raced to a 13th place finish today with a two-run total of 2:03.86.  Both Graybill and Sullivan slid the Altenberg track for the first time this week.


“It was a lot of fun sliding with teammates who have never been here before,” O’Shea said.  “I enjoyed seeing their reactions and watching them improve each day.”


Emerging British athlete Rose McGrandle was yesterday’s winner with a total time of 2:00.43.  Lena Joch from Germany was 0.43 seconds back from the leader, and her teammate Jacqueline Lölling claimed bronze.


Lölling moved up to claim gold today in 1:59.70.  Joch trailed her countryman by just 0.06 seconds, and Just was third with a total time of 2:00.21.


For media inquiries, please contact Amanda Bird, USBSF Marketing & Communications Manager, at, or at (518) 354-2250 begin_of_the_skype_highlightingend_of_the_skype_highlighting




Men’s skeleton race #1

1. Michael Zachrau (GER) 1:57.20 (58.51, 58.69); 2. Paul Fraser (CAN) 1:57.54 (58.97, 58.57); 3. Colin Domke (GER) 1:57.77 (58.92, 58.85);…15. Tom Santagato (USA) 1:59.52 (1:00.08 , 59.44)…23. Allen Blackwell (USA) (1:00.68, DNS);


Men’s skeleton race #2

1. Pavel Kulikov (RUS) 1:56.55 (58.29, 58.26); 2. Charles Wlodarczak (CAN) 1:56.77 (58.33, 58.44); 3. Rusian Sabitov (RUS) 1:57.02 (58.69, 58.33);…9. Allen Blackwell (USA) 1:58.80 (59.53, 59.27);…12. Greg West (USA) 1:59.45 (59.92, 59.53);


Women’s skeleton race #1

1. Rose McGrandle (GBR) 2:00.43 (1:00.42, 1:00.01); 2. Lena Joch (GER) 2:00.70 (1:00.48, 1:00.22); 3. Jacqueline Lolling (GER) 2:00.83 (1:00.46, 1:00.37);…10. Annie O’Shea (USA) 2:02.70 (1:01.40, 1:01.30);…19. Savannah Graybill (USA) 2:09.40 (1:01.97, 1:07.43);


Women’s skeleton race #2
1. Jacqueline Lolling (GER) 1:59.70 (59.85, 59.85); 2. Lena Joch (GER) 1:59.76 (1:00.02, 59.74); 3. Maxi Just (GER) 2:00.21 (1:00.23, 59.98);…9. Savannah Graybill (USA) 2:02.77 (1:01.32, 1:01.45);…13. Meghan Sullivan (USA) 2:03.86 (1:01.97, 1:01.89);


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