Bill Tavares staying on as USA Luge coach through 2022
LAKE PLACID, N.Y. (AP) — Bill Tavares will try to extend his Olympic medal-winning streak through the 2022 Beijing Games.
Tavares, who was the national team’s interim coach this past season for the Pyeongchang Games — will keep the role in a full-time capacity for the next four years, USA Luge announced Tuesday.
Tavares has helped the U.S. win sliding medals at every Winter Olympics since 2002, three of them in women’s bobsled, one in women’s luge and the most recent when Chris Mazdzer won silver in the men’s luge race at Pyeongchang. Tavares was named interim coach in May after Miro Zayonc stepped down for health reasons.
Tavares will be helped by assistant coaches Bengt Walden and Lubomir Mick, both of whom are being retained along with strength and conditioning coach Matt Oakes and team manager Keith Younger.
CEO Jim Leahy also is committing to USA Luge for four more years, through the Beijing Games.
There are some off-ice changes coming, most notably in the USA Luge board room, where Dwight Bell — who served five terms as the group’s president over the past 35 years — is being replaced by Erin Warren, a two-time Olympian.
Warren was voted into office last month.
“I am privileged to serve this organization, especially knowing how Dwight’s stewardship has served USA Luge so well for so long,” Warren said. “This board will remain true to its mission of developing athletes that will compete successfully and honorably at the sport’s highest levels.”
Robert Fegg, who raced with Germany before coaching in Canada and South Korea, is taking over as coach of USA Luge’s junior national team.
USA Luge plans to announce its national teams for the upcoming season later this spring.