Birthday victory for World Cup leader Natalie Geisenberger

Olympic Champion Natalie Geisenberger made sure to celebrate her 29th birthday in style with victory at the latest Luge World Cup in Oberhof.

The German athlete was pushed all the way though, winning by just one thousandth of a second from Tatjana Huefner.

The latter, who has the full complement of Olympic medals to her name, set a time of 41.248 seconds on her first run to beat the new track record just set by her long-term rival Geisenberger by 39 thousandths of a second.

The record fell again on the second run, with Geisenberger the one to go quickest in 41.101 to snatch victory with Russian slider Tatyana Ivanova third.

The German luge athlete now leads the overall World Cup standings on 797 points, 77 ahead of Huefner with Erin Hamlin of the USA third on 536 ahead of the final two races of the season later this month.

Geisenberger said: “I think that one thousandth of a second was a birthday treat today. In terms of the overall rankings I’m still cautious because there are two races left to go.”

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