SIGULDA, Latvia (AP) — Veteran Albert Demchenko of Russia won the men's singles race Sunday at a luge World Cup event in Latvia, narrowly beating long-time Italian rival Armin Zoeggeler.
The 41-year-old Demchenko finished with a combined time of 1 minute, 37.605 seconds over two runs on the Sigulda track, beating Zoeggeler by 0.042 seconds. "I feel younger than I actually am," said Demchenko, the 2006 Olympic silver medalist. "We have a very good physiotherapist on our Russian team, and I have no back problems."
Germany's Felix Loch finished third with a time of 1:37.708, a result he attributed to a crucial error on a bend. "I've made that really big mistake in the exit of curve 15," he said. "It was such a stupid mistake it almost makes me laugh. But hey, things like that happen."
Zoeggeler agreed with his German rival. "Without that mistake, Felix would surely have won," Zoeggeler said. Despite the error, Loch retains his overall lead after four events this season. His compatriot Andi Langenhan is second, while Demchenko's victory Sunday propelled him to third place.
American Chris Mazdzer finished 19th for the day, just 1.133 second behind Demchenko, while Taylor Morris came in 23rd. In the team relay races, Germany won again to maintain its dominance in the event, followed by Italy and Russia. Germany leads the overall ranking after three of six team relay races.
This season's World Cup will wrap up in Sochi, Russia, in February.