Felix Loch claims 4th successive luge World Cup title

ALTENBERG, Germany (AP) Felix Loch led a German sweep of the top three places to claim the luge World Cup title with his sixth victory of the season on Saturday.

Loch, the Olympic champion, was fastest in the first run and quick enough in the second to win in a combined time of 1 minute, 48.193 seconds, 0.270 seconds ahead of Johannes Ludwig and 0.282 ahead of Andi Langenhan.

Loch is assured of his for fourth successive title – the 25-year-old is unassailable on 805 points, ahead of Langenhan on 539 with just two events remaining.

Earlier, Germany’s Tobias Wendl and Tobias Arlt won the doubles race to cut the gap on compatriots Toni Eggert and Sascha Benecken in the standings.

Wendl and Arlt, the world and Olympic champions, were quickest in both runs for a combined time of 1 minute, 23.146 seconds, edging the World Cup leaders by 0.072.

Latvian brothers Andris and Juris Sics were third, two-tenths of a second back, ahead of Austria’s Peter Penz and Georg Fischler.

With just Sunday’s sprint and next week’s final race in Sochi remaining, Eggert and Benecken lead Wendl and Arlt by 40 points. Two second-place finishes would be enough for Eggert and Benecken to claim the title even if Wendl and Arlt won both events.

Germany’s Natalie Geisenberger can secure the women’s title on Sunday.