The two races, held on the Mt Van Hoevenberg track in Lake Placid, New York, were the first for Hoar on her new sled, and the first time that she had been to the Lake Placid track since the 2007/2008 season.
After the eight-event World Cup season and the season-ending World Championships, the races were a culmination of three weeks of post-season training for the skeleton program’s senior athletes.
It was also an opportunity for a group of new developing skeleton athletes to hone their skills at a school and camp co-ordinated by the Australian Bobsleigh Skeleton Association’s Brian Voight.
In a relief to the race organisers, race week saw a return to winter-like conditions with light snow falls after temperatures in the low to mid 20s the week before.
After the two gold medals, Hoar was pleased with her results and happy that she has been able to find the consistency in her runs that is needed for success at the higher levels.
In the first races of their careers, and after a total of only 20 runs from the top of any track, Jaclyn Narracott finished in 12th and 14th places, while Jade Martins finished 15th in both races.
Both Narracott and Martins showed a great feel for sliding and have the potential for a bright future in the sport.
In a surprise to the men's field, the novice Australian sliders gave a strong showing, with all five men turning in performances over the week and in racing that should see the depth of Australian skeleton racing greatly improve in the coming years.