Bobsled, skeleton NAC Cup kicks off this week
LAKE PLACID — Lake Placid will host the North American Cup bobsled and skeleton races from Thursday, March 23 to Monday, March 27, at the Sliding Center at Mt. Van Hoevenberg. The NAC races in Lake Placid are the last on the International Bobsleigh and Skeleton calendar and will determine final season standings for the circuit. Spectators are welcome to watch the races free of charge.
The races are expected to draw a competitive field, especially since there are no other IBSF races happening around the world at the time.
It is the final event of the season and the last chance for athletes to accumulate points toward the overall season standings. The 2022-2023 champions will be crowned in men’s and women’s skeleton, two-woman bobsled, women’s monobob, two-man bobsled and four-man bobsled.
The NAC circuit is a notch below the World Cup — the highest level of international sliding — but is a place for developing athletes to sharpen their skills in a competitive environment. It’s also an opportunity for established Olympians like Sylvia Hoffman, Kaysha Love and Kris Horn to try their hand at driving after coming up through the ranks in the back of the sled.
Lauren Brzozowski comes into the Lake Placid event as the NAC points leader in monobob. The New Jersey native earned an early reputation as a strong pusher and quickly moved into the driver’s seat, where she has been for the last three seasons.
An NAC overall title would bolster her already strong resume as she stakes a claim to be selected to the national team next season. Brzozowski has racked up 614 points in six NAC events this season, leading Mackenzie Stewart of Canada, who has 496. Brzozowski is ranked No. 3 in the two-women bobsled overall standings with 230 points.
Austin Florian, Mystique Ro and Hallie Clark highlight the American skeleton field. Florian, a mainstay on the United States World Cup team, is coming off a career season after narrowly missing out on earning a spot in the Beijing Olympics. He has placed in the top six in a few World Cup races this season, with hopes of sliding onto the podium next season.
Ro racked up several impressive results this winter, bouncing between the Intercontinental Cup, Europa Cup and World Cup tours this winter. She was crowned as the 2022 World Push Champion in December and finished third overall on the Europa Cup and sixth overall on the Intercontinental Cup circuit. Clark, an 18-year-old who recently transferred to the U.S. from the Canadian program, is looking to cap off a strong season in which she won two World Cup silver medals.