Andy Wood's Blog

GB Skeleton Athlete

Slug-like in Cesana

Having arrived in Italy a few days early, we had the opportunity to do a few extra runs before the 3 days of official training started.  This was great news, as it would give me more time to play around with my sled setup and find what works best for the conditions and the type of track here in Cesana.  I tried many different variations of the setup but I couldn’t find one which gave me a competitive down time.

As a result, I went into the race today well prepared and motivated as always, but not really having high expectations for a good finish.  It was just as well as I managed a 21st place in the final standings.  Thinking back over the single run that I had in the race, I can’t place a finger on where I lost so much time.  It was a good run.  Even my coaches who watched me on the big TV as I descended said that they couldn’t see anything wrong with my lines.

With this race result in mind, as well my training and race performances in N.America, We’ve decided it would be best if I move onto a different sled for the next race.  Don’t get me wrong, I think these new Blackroc sleds are fantastic and have huge potential, it’s just that I need to get results now and I think I would need a lot more runs to get the most out of this sled.  Unfortunately time is not on my side.  It’s Olympic season and I need to perform if I want a chance of going to the Vancouver Games.

So now we’re heading off to Winterberg in Germany.  I’m taking a detour via Innsbruck to get setup on a sled which is similar to my Bromley one which I’ve been using for the past few years.  Hopefully then I’ll be back performing at my best again.

Men’s Race Results:

1 Jon Montgomery 01:55.54 Canada
2 Martins Dukurs 01:56.01 00.47 Latvia
3 Jeff Pain 01:56.05 00.51 Canada
4 Michael Douglas 01:56.15 00.61 Canada
5 Sandro Stielicke 01:56.25 00.71 Germany
5 Frank Rommel 01:56.25 00.71 Germany

Women’s Race Results:

1 Shelley Rudman 01:57.46 Great Britain
2 Marion Trott 01:57.81 00.35 Germany
3 Mellisa Hollingsworth 01:58.13 00.67 Canada
4 Kerstin Szymkowiak 01:58.32 00.86 Germany
5 Katie Uhlaender 01:58.61 01.15 United States of America
6 Noelle Pikus-Pace 01:58.76 01.30 United States of America

December 4, 2009 - Posted by | Blog Archive


  1. Hi Andy,

    Nice to see the updates again, good luck with the new sled, hope that brings you some more luck! Must be difficult switching to that sled in the first place when you spent such a lot of time on the other one! Fingers crossed for some great results. Make sure you name your sled, that’s my piece of advice, be one with the sled. I recommend the name Dudley. Keep us posted!

    Kate x

    Comment by Kate | December 7, 2009 | Reply

  2. Hi Kate!

    Yeah the updates were a bit sparse a couple of weeks ago. I think it was the jet-lag and the admin stuff I had to do during the limited time back home which affected my typing performance!

    Yeah switching sleds can be difficult sometimes, like when you drive a new car. Feels odd and takes some getting used to. I did actually name the new sled ‘Frank the Tank’ from the film Old School, but I reckon calling it a tank probably gave me subliminal messages that it’s slow and heavy! So Dudley it is for my old sled…. 😀


    Comment by andywoodskeleton | December 7, 2009 | Reply

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