KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia (AP) — They trained together, lived together and laughed together last summer. Kaillie Humphries and Elana Meyers got tight.
On Tuesday, their friendship gets put on hold and their rivalry heats up.
There's an Olympic medal on the line.
Just as they did on the World Cup circuit, USA-1 driver Meyers and Canada-1 pilot Humphries will steer their bobsleds down a mountain track, this time inside the five rings.
Humphries edged Meyers of Douglasville, Ga., for the overall championship, winning by one point. They're expected to be at or near the top of the leader board following the first two runs on the Sanki Sliding Center track. The competition concludes Wednesday with two final heats.
Four years ago, Humphries and brakeman Heather Moyse won gold in Vancouver, thrilling a Canadian crowd. If she can repeat, Humphries and Moyse will become the first team to defend their title since women's bobsled debuted 12 years ago in Salt Lake.
Moyse came out of retirement and underwent surgery to fix an abnormality in her hip to slide with Humphries again.
"People talked to us about how excited we were to win in Whistler, and we were, but only because it was a race," she said. "We're trying to focus on that it's a race, man. It's a race and because it's a race, we want to win. Take all these rings away and if it's a toboggan race, we still want to win."
Meyers is teamed with former track star Lauryn Williams of Rochester, Pa., vying to become the second athlete to win gold medals in summer and winter Olympics in different events.
USA-2, piloted by Jamie Greubel of Newtown, Pa., with brakeman Aja Evans of Chicago, posted some of the fastest training times and will contend.
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