Edney top Canadian after two runs in men’s luge

Samuel Edney was Canada’s top slider after the first two runs of the men’s single luge on Saturday night, finishing 10th.

The 25-year-old, from Calgary, finished with a two-run combined time of 1:37.547, behind leader Felix Loch, who had a time of 1:36.57.

Loch and his German teammate David Moller finished first and second after two runs, with Armin Zoggeler finishing in third.

The 36-year-old Italian is the favourite to win the luge, having won gold in the two previous Olympics.

Loch, Moller, and Zoggeler finished in the top three positions in the standings after both races.

Jeff Christie, of Vancouver, and Ian Cockerline from Calgary, were the other Canadians to race, finishing 14th and 21st respectively.

The final two runs to decide the medals will be held Sunday.

The luge track was pronounced safe to race after the course went through alterations following the tragic death of Georgian luger Nodar Kumaritashvili in a training session Friday.

The men’s race was run from the women’s start and an extension was built to the wall at the spot Kumaritashvili lost control of his sled and went off th track.

The decision by the International Luge Federation (FIL) to move the start line forward has been met with some opposition by both coaches and competitors.

I never felt like [the track] was dangerously fast,” Cockerline told the National Post.  “I always enjoyed going fast here.  I got a little kick out of trying to get that speed record.  I think a lot of people in the sport feel that way.  I think that’s probably why you get into a sport like luge anyway.”

Canadian Luge coach Wolfgang Staudinger was upset that coaches were not consulted by the FIL before the decision to start from the women’s line was made.

“It’s changing the entire thing,” Staudinger told the Canadian Press.  The track “is absolutely safe.  The track was safe before.”

Kumaritashvili’s teammate, Levan Gureshidze, did not compete Saturday, although the Georgian team will remain at the Games in honour of their countryman.