Doubles luge produces a Canadian best-ever breakthrough

Another day, another best-ever result for Canada in Olympic luge competition.

One day after Alex Gough recorded her historic fourth place finish in women’s luge, Tristan Walker and Justin Snith matched that with their own fourth place finish in doubles luge. The previous best-ever result for Canada in the event was a fifth place finish by Eric Pothier and Chris Moffat at Salt Lake City 2002.

“We’re capable of sliding with the best in the world, we’ve proved it tonight, ” said Walker. “It’s tough, but we have to take that into tomorrow (in the team relay). We know the challenges now, there’s really only one thing I would have liked to change in the second run, but other than that, we know what we have to do tomorrow in the relay.”

Walker and Snith were first to race in the opening heat and set a track record that was later surpassed by three other teams, including the defending Olympic champions as well as the reigning world champions.

In the second and final heat, Walker and Snith could only post the sixth fastest run, causing them to miss the podium by just five one-hundredths of a second.

“I’ve got mixed emotions,” said Snith. “Fourth place, it’s tough but on the other hand, we’ve set another Canadian record at the Olympics. I’m happy, we had good runs, except for that small mistake. Whether or not that would have been the difference, I’m not quite sure, but it’s always tough knowing you could have done better.”

Snith and Walker recorded their first World Cup podium in January but have had a string of fourth place finishes, including at the 2013 World Championships and at the World Cup that served as the test event for the Sanki Sliding Centre.