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U.S., Canada File Protest Over German's Boots

By John Kekis
Associated Press
Sunday, February 8, 1998; 2:06 a.m. EST

NAGANO, Japan — Less than an hour after Georg Hackl took the first-run lead in men's luge, the United States and Canada filed separate protests regarding the German star's boots.

Hackl began his quest for a record third straight Olympic gold medal in championship style, blistering the 15-turn Spiral course in 49.861 seconds on the first of four runs.

But after the run was over, the United States and Canada protested. USA Luge spokesman Sandy Caligiore said Hackl was wearing brand new Adidas boots that were not made available to other competitors and that the angle of the boot was illegal, allowing them to cut through the air faster.

"We kind of knew something was coming, but figured we'd wait to see what it was,'' Caligiore said.

The jury had not made a decision before the second run.

© Copyright 1998 The Associated Press

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