Natalie Geisenberger claimed her third successive Olympic luge singles title ©Getty Images

Natalie Geisenberger became the most successful Winter Olympic luge athlete as the German star clinched her third successive women’s singles title at the Yanqing National Sliding Centre.

Geisenberger was seeking to secure her fifth Olympic title, having also won team relay gold at Sochi 2014 and Pyeongchang 2018.

The 34-year-old was expected to face competition from compatriot Julia Taubitz and Austria’s Madeleine Egle, with the pair having finished as the top two on the World Cup circuit.

Taubitz had recorded a track record with her opening run yesterday, only to see a crash on the 13th corner of her second end her hopes of challenging for the medals.

Egle equally suffered with a 17th place finish in her first run.

There were no such issues for Geisenberger, who recorded two strong times to lead the competition at the halfway mark.

A track record time of 58.226 seconds in the third run strengthened her grip on gold, which she sealed by completing her final effort in 58.403.

An overall time of 3min 53.454sec saw Geisenberger become only the second luger to win three consecutive singles gold medals at the Winter Olympics, joining German great Georg Hackl.

Geisenberger had initially considered boycotting the Games due to concerns over COVID-19 conditions, having spoken out against treatment from organisers after attending a Beijing 2022 test event in November.

She only opted to attend the Games last month after being reassured of conditions by the International Olympic Committee, with her decision to compete rewarded with a fifth gold and sixth medal in total.

Natalie Geisenberger has secured five Olympic gold medals during her career ©Getty Images
Natalie Geisenberger has secured five Olympic gold medals during her career ©Getty Images

"It's hard to compare Olympic medals, because every one has its own history," Geisenberger said.

"My first was very, very special because I was a first-time Olympic champion and now I’m a five-time Olympic champion, but it is the first time as a mother.

"It's just great."

German domination of luge was highlighted further with Anna Berreiter finishing as the runner-up.

Berreiter completed her four runs in a time of 3:53.947 to end 0.493 behind the winner.

The 22-year-old was the only competitor to finish within a second of Geisenberger.

Russian Olympic Committee’s Tatiana Ivanova finished as the bronze medallist in a time of 3:54.507.

She ended 0.352 seconds clear of Egle, who missed out on a podium finish despite an impressive recovery from her poor opening run.