Megan Henry Wins USA Skeleton National Push Championships
In a very close race, Megan Henry won the USA Skeleton National Push Championships in Calgary. Dakarai Kongela took home the men’s title in what is considered to be a tune-up race before the season officially starts.
Henry (Roxbury, Conn.) had clean runs, posting times of 5.07 and 5.08 seconds, giving her a final combined time of 10.15 seconds. Henry was competing in her first push championships since 2013, after injuries forced her off the circuit. She finished fourth overall in 2013, and this was her first title since winning it in 2011. Kristen Hurley (Columbia, Conn.) was next behind her, finishing with a combined time of 10.26 seconds.
Henry and Hurley were leagues above the rest of the field, with the next top finisher being at 10.42 seconds. The time difference between second and third was the same as the difference beween Kelly Curtis (Princeton, NJ.) finished in fourth place with a time of 10.47 seconds.
Kongela edged Austin Florian (Southington, Conn.) for the men’s title. Kyle Tress (Doylestown, PA.) finished tenth and Jake Miter (Troy, NY.) placed seventh. Kongela was competing in his first ever push competition, after spending the first part of his career primarily as a bobsledder.
While the national team for the upcoming 2016-2017 season doesn’t consider the results of this race during selection, the extra exposure for the racers is invaluable as they continue to get in shape for a grueling season. They have a lot more work to do in the 17 months leading up the 2018 Olympics to get in tip top shape.
The U.S. will select its team during two races, the first being in Lake Placid from Oct. 23-24, and the other in Park City, Utah, from Nov. 1-2. The team will then officially be announced on Nov. 3.
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