LAKE PLACID, N.Y. — Augusta’s Julia Clukey ended Erin Hamlin’s winning streak at five by capturing the 2012 Norton USA Luge National Championship over the weekend.

Clukey had beaten Hamlin’s two-run total Friday but Hamlin narrowly beat Clukey in her two-run total Saturday. Clukey won the championship based on her four-heat total of 2 minutes, 59.953 seconds despite competing on a secondary set of steel runners. Hamlin’s four heats totaled 3:00.041, a mere 0.088 of a difference over three miles of racing.

“This win puts me in a great place,” said Clukey, who had surgery to address Arnold Chiari Syndrome just two seasons ago. The operation required the shaving of 8 millimeters of bone from the base of her skull to relieve chronic headaches and fatigue.

“We have a great women’s team. I think Erin and I are going to push each other all year. We have different strengths and weaknesses. It’s a great team atmosphere and I think the women’s team is going to make a stand this year.”


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