ISHPEMING, Mich. (WJMN) – This weekend, everyone aged 8 and up has the chance to try out natural track luge via a wheeled luge clinic in Marquette County.
The event is free and features coaching from U.S. Luge Team Head Coach Keith Whitman and Austrian Luge Coach Tina Gotschl.
The event kicked off Saturday at the Teal Lake Lodge in Ishpeming.
“It’s to introduce people in the Upper Peninsula of what our sport is,” Whitman said. “How it’s done, how we operate, what our sleds are like, and it gives them a chance before the season starts (to show) this is our sled, this is how we work, what a sled does, to get on a sled and try it.”
“They come here and the first thing we do is we explain to them is what is luge,” Gotschl said. “Because you know, normally the people know ‘Oh, you can do luge in winter on ice, but now it’s autumn. How can you luge in fall? So we explain to them that we do luge on wheels, so we go down the normal streets and this is a perfect way to start with the sport.”
“You catch on quick to it,” said clinic attendee Hunter Evans. “Going down I would say it’s pretty good. Before that we didn’t even have any practice with it. Before we did it, we watched some videos of people doing it. If you’ve got some extra time on your hands, I would suggest doing it.”
“If anybody has ever luged, it’s just luging with wheels or it’s a long sled with wheels on it,” said clinic attendee Caleb Schwiderson. “There’s more sand that can kick up, and rocks, than snow luging. I thought it was going to be on grass but it’s on concrete, so that made me more alert to what I was doing because if I flew off or fell it would have hurt more.”
The clinic continues on Sunday, September 23 from 4 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. at the Iron Industry Mining Museum, located at 73 Forge Road in Negaunee.
You can connect with the Upper Peninsula Luge Club here.