LAKE PLACID, N.Y. - A group of accomplished, medal winning young athletes will headline the fall 2013 Junior National Team, including two Youth Olympic Games gold medalists and four overall Youth World Cup medalists.
Summer Britcher of Glen Rock, Pa. and Tucker West, of Ridgefield, Conn., 2012 Youth Olympic Games team relay gold medalists, return to the team in the junior age bracket, for those born in 1994 and 1995. Britcher ranked sixth in last year’s overall Junior World Cup, while West placed 18th.
Both are no strangers to racing against older and more experienced competitors. At this season’s Norton National Championships, West tied for the gold medal with 2010 Olympian Chris Mazdzer of Saranac Lake, N.Y., while Britcher took third.
Riley Stohr, a native of Ludington, Mich. who resides in Whitehall, Mich. and the doubles team of Justin Krewson of Eastport, N.Y. and Tristan Jeskanen of Peru, N.Y. were also named to the team. Stohr won the overall Youth A World Cup silver medal and the Krewson/Jeskanen sled was third in the Youth A doubles World Cup.
Theresa Buckley of Allentown, Pa., winner of the 2011-12 overall Youth A World Cup silver medal, earned a spot on the women’s team, along with Britcher. For the 2013-14 luge season, athletes born in 1996-99, including Stohr, Krewson, Jeskanen and Buckley, will be eligible for Youth A competition.
Aidan Kelly of West Islip, N.Y. will be joining West in the fall as a member of the men’s team. Kelly ranked 13th in the 2012-13 Junior World Cup.
An additional 42 athletes were named to the Junior National C and D teams, providing a healthy crop of future stars for USA Luge. More racers from the western states will be added to the roster in the fall.
Junior National C Team
Sydney Axton (Port Byron, N.Y.)
Samantha Carone (Park City, Utah)
Raychel Germaine (Roswell, Ga.)
Sophie Kirkby (Ray Brook, N.Y.)
Shannon Knapp (Marcy, N.Y.)
Hannah Miller (Rome, N.Y.)
Kaitlin Simi (Park City, Utah)
Gracie Weinberg (Middlebury, Vt.)
Courtney Yando (Brainardsville, N.Y.)
Nikol Yonemura (Salt Lake City, Utah)
Liam Chaskey (Plattsburgh, N.Y.)
Jonny Gustafson (Massena, N.Y.)
Blake Hagberg (Utica, N.Y.)
Sean Hollander (Lake Placid, N.Y.)
Elijah Pedriani (New Haven, Vt.)
Charles Poarch (Sandy Hook, Conn.)
Duncan Segger (Lake Placid, N.Y.)
Nikolaus Steg (Saratoga Springs, N.Y)
Justin Taylor (Newark, Del.)
Levi Underwood (Skandia, Mich.)
Aidan Trimble (Sharon, Vt.)
Parker Vance (Orangeville, Pa.)
Junior National D Team
Anna Basaj (Whitehall, Mich.)
Katherine Bishop (Carlisle, Mass.)
Emma Bowling (Indianapolis, Ind.
Rachel Bowling (Indianapolis, Ind.)
Emeline Cave (Philpot, Ky.)
Sydney Cripps (Indianapolis, Ind.)
Ashley Farquharson (Park City, Utah)
Chevonne Forgan (Chelmsford, Mass.)
Courtney Sepucha (Concord, Mass.)
Kaylee Thomas (Chelmsford, Mass.)
Duncan Biles (Herriman, Utah)
Justin Bistrovich (Syracuse, N.Y.)
Zach DiGregorio (Medway, Mass.)
Peter Hart (Carlisle, Mass.)
Ryan Lubetski (Sweet Valley, Pa.)
David Osborne (Wellesley, Mass.)
Matthew Osborne (Wellesley, Mass.)
Evan Scheifelbein (Indianapolis, Ind.)
Ian Smith (Carlisle, Mass.)
Jayanth Tatikonda (Indianapolis, Ind.)
Members of the Junior National Team will hit the ice in early October when the National Team begins its season in Lake Placid, N.Y., with camps scheduled for C and D team athletes throughout the fall and winter.
Several members of the Junior National Team will be in summer residence at the Olympic Training Center, as they could be in the mix for Olympic Team berths. Summer camps for C and D team members will also be held in Lake Placid and Park City, Utah.
The first Junior World Cup event will take place in Altenberg, Germany on November 29-30.