Russians win four-man bobsled, USA third

Feb. 23, 2014 at 7:22 AM
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SOCHI, Russia, Feb. 23 (UPI) -- Alexander Zubkov of Russia made what was likely his final Olympic appearance a winning one Sunday in the four-man bobsled.

Zubkov drove the sled to the first Russian four-man gold medal in Olympic history.

It was the 13th and last gold medal of the Sochi Games for the home country, leaving the Russians in first place in that category

This was Zubkov's fifth Winter Olympics and he had previously won two medals -- a two-man bronze in Vancouver and a four-man silver in Turin.

At these Games he became the fifth bobsled driver to sweep both the two-man and four-man gold medals at a single Olympics.

Zubkov had the fastest time in the first and third of the four runs, but his second and fourth trips down the sliding course were not his best. His final run was only the sixth best among the 20 sleds left in the competition, but it was good enough for a victory of .09 of a second over Latvia.

The bronze went to the United States with Steven Holcombe driving to his second mdeal of the Olympics. It had been 62 years since the Americans had won a medal in both the two-man and four-man bobsled at the same Olympics.

There was a gap of just .03 of a second between the United States and another Russian sled in the race for the bronze medal.

Germany has dominated this event through the years with either East Germany, West Germany or the unified country winning gold seven times in the previous previous 11 Olympics. This was the first time no German sled had medaled since 1968.

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