By TOM WITHERS, AP Sports Writer
KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia (AP) — Germany's Felix Loch is halfway to defending his Olympic gold medal in men's luge.
The eight-time world champion coached by three-time gold medalist Georg Hackl finished his first two trips down the Sanki Center Sliding track in 1 minute, 44.149 seconds.
He leads Russia's Albert Demchenko (1:44.443) and Italy's Armin Zoeggeler (1:44.893), two of the sport's greats who are in their 40s and trying to keep up with the 24-year-old Loch.
Appearing in his seventh games, Demchenko led Loch after the first run with a time of 52.170 seconds. But Loch completed his second run down the 17-curve course in 51.964 seconds to take the lead and remind the field he's the one they're chasing.
Chris Mazdzer of Saranac Lake, N.Y., is 13th heading into Sunday's final two runs.
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