Alexander Tretiakov claimed his first win of the season in the men's skeleton ©IBSF

Defending overall skeleton champions Alexander Tretiakov and Elena Nikitina of Russia secured victories at the International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation World Cup in Lake Placid.

Sochi 2014 Olympic champion Tretiakov, who kept his gold medal after a successful appeal against a doping ban, edged out Martins Dukurs of Latvia by just 0.04sec in a closely fought men's competition.

The Russian clocked a combined time of 1min 46.55sec to beat reigning world champion Dukurs.

Felix Keisinger of Germany, who set a track record last week at the World Cup season-opener at the same venue last weekend, was third in 1:46.97.

Tretiakov leads the overall standings on 425 points, five in front of Dukurs, while Axel Jungk of Germany is third.

Nikitina, stripped of her Olympic bronze medal from Sochi 2014 for doping before it was reinstated on appeal, claimed a dominant win in the women's event.

Elena Nikitina won the women's race in Lake Placid ©Getty Images
Elena Nikitina won the women's race in Lake Placid ©Getty Images

The double European Championships gold medallist completed her two runs in 1:49.93, 1.12 quicker than nearest challenger Jacqueline Lölling of Germany.

Austria's Janine Flock was third in 1:51.11.

German star Francesco Friedrich, whose long unbeaten run came to an end in Lake Placid last weekend, returned to the top of the podium with victory in the two-man bobsleigh.

Friedrich and Alexander Schüller pipped compatriots Johannes Lochner and Christian Rasp, winners of the season-opener, by 0.23.

Justin Kripps of Canada and his brakeman Ben Coakwell were third, 0.57 back.

The event continues tomorrow.