The announcement sent shockwaves through skeleton coaches and competitors
LAKE PLACID, N.Y.— On Monday, the International Olympic Committee announced in a meeting in Mumbai, India that the 2026 Olympic Winter Games venue for luge, bobsled and skeleton will be changed.
The announcement sent shockwaves through the skeleton coaches and competitors gathered for the Push Nationals.
The 2026 Olympic sliding sports venue will be in Igls, Austria, or St. Moritz, Switzerland. An announcement regarding the location of the competitions could come as soon as the end of this year.
The original venue, the historic Eugenio Monti track in Cortana d’Ampezzo, Italy, site of the 1956 Olympic Winter Games, was to be rebuilt for the 2026 Games. However, estimated costs to complete the work to the track were double than expected.
Jim Leahy, USA Luge CEO said in a statement, “USA Luge is disappointed the location of the sliding sports venue for the 2026 Olympic Winter Games has been moved away from Cortina, as we believe it would have been an ideal location given its history. That said, our athletes will be ready and enthusiastic for the competitions, regardless of where they take place.”
The originally proposed venue holds a special spot in the hearts and history of the USA sliding community. A 32-year-old American bobsledder from Lake Placid, New York and brother of NBC Olympic bobsled commentator John Morgan, was tragically killed in a bobsled sliding accident on the Eugenio Monti track in Cortana d’Ampezzo in 1981.
This move will mark the first time in the Winter Olympic Games that sports will be contested in a different nation.