More to look four-ward to

IAN BUSBY -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 1:38 PM ET

A week ago, Pierre Lueders felt he would let down all the support staff at Canada Olympic Park if he finished anywhere but first. Today, the Calgarian is working for two specific men and forgetting the rest.

After winning the two-man world championship last Saturday with brakeman Lascelles Brown, Lueders enters the four-man today (9 a.m.) with his sights set on getting pushers Morgan Alexander and Ken Kotyk some hardware.

"They help out so much in the two-man, moving sleds around and preparing," Lueders said.

"They do a lot of background work. When they're not doing four-man, they do a lot of things to make our lives easier in the two-man.

"Just seeing how pumped they were about us doing well, it would be nice to have them sitting in the sled and having the same success."

The time seems to be right for Lueders to strike for a second medal. The 34-year-old pilot is experiencing probably the best season of his career.

He hit the podium in six of seven two-man World Cup races and won medals in three four-man races, including a gold in St. Moritz, Switzerland, one of the toughest tracks on the circuit.

Then he returned home to demolish the field in the world championships. But as he listened to O Canada play in the festival tent last Saturday, Lueders made sure everyone knew his season wasn't complete yet.

"I learned over the years that if you get caught up in the one race, it can really affect you emotionally for the other," he said.

"It's too hard to get back up for it. I tried to enjoy it the best I could, which was nothing really special.

"I've been looking forward to the four-man race for quite a while. I didn't want to let my teammates down by partying."

When Lueders sat fifth after the first two-man run, he could see disappointment written on the faces of COP staff.

Although he didn't admit it at the time, there was plenty of pressure building.

Lueders and Brown responded by putting up the top time in runs two and three and cruising to victory.

It won't be the same anxiety today. But the stress is clearly on other teams because Lueders has a victory already.

So he kept his team relaxed this week, shooting for consistent training runs without trying to break course records.

He's more focused on the process rather than the result.

"But deep down, we really would like to be in the top three," Lueders said.

"It would be a great cap to a good year."


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