November 27, 2015

ALTENBERG, Germany (AP) Laura Deas of Britain got the skeleton season underway Friday by surprising the favorites and claiming her first World Cup victory.

In the absence of compatriot Lizzy Yarnold, the Olympic and World Champion who is taking a one-year break, Deas sped down the track in 59.28 seconds with her first run and 58.56 in her second for a combined time of 1:57.84, edging Germany's Tina Hermann by 0.04 seconds.

Hermann produced the quickest first run of 59.21 but 58.67 in the second wasn't enough to prevent Deas overtaking her.

Jacqueline Loelling of Germany was third in her World Cup debut in 1:58.01, followed by compatriot Sophia Griebel (1:58.39) and Lelde Priedulena of Latvia (1:58.55).

Defending World Cup champion Janine Flock of Austria was 10th.

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