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|Natural Track News vom 05.02.09|
|30th European Junior Championships in Lungiarue (ITA), Feb 6th to 8th, 2009|
European Junior Championships with World Cup Stars
Once again the luge community will come to the Italian mountains to the tiny village with the three names: Lungiarue is the original ladinic version, Longirú the Italian and Campill the German name. But while at past occasions World Cup races had been held in Lungiarue, this time the junior racers will meet to fight for the titles of the European Champion.
Two years ago in St. Sebastian (AUT) Melanie Batkowski (AUT), Patrick Pigneter (ITA) and Patrick Pigneter/Florian Clara (ITA) had won the titles.
Only Melanie Batkowski is young enough (she will turn 20 during the current season) to compete once again and have a go at trying to defend her title. Next to Batkowski, there is also Evelyn Lanthaler (ITA) who already has earned her merits in the World Cup. Just one week ago in Deutschnofen/Nova Ponente Lanthaler could celebrate her first podium finish in a World Cup when she finished second.
In the men´s event Hannes Clara is the local hero from Longiarue. He, too, is an experiences World Cup athlete, so far he has achieved four top-three results, being runner up once and three times third. His toughest competitor might be Thomas Schopf (AUT) who has been the World Cup rookie of this season. He has finished on the podium in each single race so far, something no other athlete has managed – not even Italy´s World Cup leader Patrick Pigneter. Just like Hannes Clara, Thomas Schopf has yet to win a race, but he finished second once and two times third.
The double seater´s event lacks clear contenders as all the top athletes in the World Cup are no longer juniors. So this event will be the opportunity for some newcomers to make their names familiar.
Training runs will be held on Friday, the competition will start on Saturday. Like in all Championships – as opposed to the World Cup – there will be three runs for the singe seaters.
Elevation of start: 1632m above sea level
Elevation of finish: 1500m
Maximum Descent: 36%
Minimum Descent: 0,5%
9.00am: Begin of training runs
6.00pm: Opening Ceremony
9.00am: 1st Competition run doubleseaters
10.30am: 2nd Competition run doubleseaters
afterwards Flower Ceremony doubleseaters
11.40am: 1st Competition run women and men
9.30am: 2nd Competition run women and men
12.00pm: 3rd Competition run women and men
afterwards Flower Ceremony
1.30pm: Medal Ceremonies