German pairings dominated in the doubles event at the International Luge Federation World Cup in Whistler, but their limelight was shared by two 16-year-old home sliders who became the first women in the event's 62-year history to compete with men.
Caitlin Nash and Natalie Corless, who have excelled on the youth circuit, finished 22nd out of the 23 entrants in a combined time of 1min 19.339sec, ahead of an Italian pairing that crashed out on its second run.
Germany’s Toni Eggert and Sascha Benecken slid to the gold medal with a two-run time of 1:16.644, and compatriots Tobias Wendl and Tobias Arlt - Olympic champions in 2014 and 2018 - took silver in 1:16.703.
Russia’s Vsevolod Kashkin and Konstantin Korshunov stopped the clock at 1:16.878 for the bronze.
After the medal ceremony, luge legends Wendl and Arlt presented their podium flowers to the Canadian teenagers, who grew up close to the venue and were supported by a large contingent of local fans.
"It is crazy,” said Corless.
"I don’t think it has sunk in yet, but we proved today that women can do this.
"We hope this gets people excited for women’s doubles which is coming into the sport."
Nash and Corless were using this race as another test in their preparations for the next month’s Youth Olympic Games, where women’s doubles will be in the lineup for the first time.
The BMW Sprint World Cup capped off the weekend at the Whistler Sliding Centre.
The newest race event on the Viessmann Luge World Cup consists of the top-15 athletes in each discipline competing in a one-run race.
The sprint doubles matched the result in the standard doubles as Germany’s Eggert and Benecken won with a time of 27.759sec.
Silver went to Wendl and Arlt in 27.762, with Russia’s Kashkin and Korshunov third in 27.763.
Reinhard Egger of Austria won the men’s singles sprint in 35.449 ahead of Russia’s standard men’s singles winner Roman Repilov, who clocked 36.456.
Austria's world champion Jonas Mueller, seeking a hat-trick of World Cup wins, had to be content with bronze after recording 36.493.
Russia’s Tatyana Ivanova, who had won the earlier women’s singles title, won the sprint version with a time of 27.839 ahead of Emily Sweeney of the United States, who recorded 27.883, and Germany’s Cheyenne Rosenthal, who clocked 27.904.