Francesco Friedrich and Thorsten Margis won the men's two-man bobsleigh event ©Getty Images

World two-man bobsleigh champions Francesco Friedrich and Thorsten Margis earned the opening victory of the International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation (IBSF) World Cup season after producing two impressive times in front of a home crowd in Altenberg, Germany.

The pairing had finished second behind Latvia’s Oskars Melbardis and Daumants Dreiškens in the final World Cup standings for 2014-2015 and they found themselves in the same position after the first run of the 2015-2016 season.

Melbardis and Dreiškens produced a blistering time of 55.80sec to hold a 0.12 second advantage over their German rivals.

But a slower time of 57.22 in the second run saw them miss out on the opening victory as they ended with a combined total of 1:53.02.

The world champions took full advantage as Friedrich and Margis finished their next run down the Altenberg track in a time of 56.64 to end the competition in 1:52.56 to secure the opening victory.

South Korea’s Yunjong Won and Youngwoo Seo completed the podium as their time of 1:53.04 saw them finish 0.19 clear of Germany’s Christian Poser and Nico Walther.

Meanwhile Martins Dukurs’ dominance of the men’s skeleton World Cup showed no sign of coming to an end as the Latvian star earned the first race win of the season.

Dukurs, who has won the World Cup for six straight seasons, was lying in third place after the first run but sped down the track in the second to finish in 56.43.

Martins Dukurs began his campaign for a seventh overall World Cup crown with a win
Martins Dukurs began his campaign for a seventh overall World Cup crown with a win ©Getty Images

It meant the reigning world champion ended on a combined total of 1:52.90 to finish 0.03 clear of Russia’s Alexander Tretiakov, the Sochi 2014 Olympic gold medallist.

Tretiakov’s compatriot Nikita Tregybov earned bronze by finishing in a time of 1:53.24, with Germany’s Axel Jungk missing out on the podium places having finished in fourth, 0.06 behind the Russian.

The opening World Cup of the season will draw to a close tomorrow (November 29) with the four-man bobsleigh event set to take place.

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