Michael Phelps, Gabby Douglas, and Great Britain 10000m gold medalist Mo Farah have all landed on the short-list for Time’s “Person of the Year.”
The Olympians join a group made up mostly of political figures (no surprises there) that includes reelected President Barack Obama and Republican candidate Mitt Romney, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert, and Knicks sensation turned Rockets afterthought, Jeremy Lin.
Phelps and Douglas are also nominees for Sports Illustrated’s “Sportsman of the Year,” which they have a much better shot at winning since Time has never honored an athlete with its annual award, but somehow saw fit to gift Adolf Hitler with the title in 1938, then honored Joseph Stalin the very next year.
SI’s award will be announced on Dec. 5 and Time’s will be awarded Dec. 14. Until then, bated breath.
Steve Langton, who was described by driver Steven Holcomb as the “best push athlete in the world,” announced his retirement today.
A collegiate sprinter and jumper at Northeastern University, Langton decided to try bobsledding after watching the 2006 Winter Olympics. He filled out an online athlete resume, and, by the 2010 Games, he was an Olympian.
At the Sochi 2014 Games, Langton teamed with Holcomb to win a bronze medal in the two-man race. It was the first Olympic medal in the event by American sled since 1952. He claimed another bronze medal as a member of Holcomb’s four-man “Night Train.”
“In Sochi I competed on the world’s biggest stage, I won two medals for my country and I did so along not only the best teammates but best friends anyone could ever ask for,” Langton told USA Bobsled.
Langton, who has a 62-inch standing box jump and can squat more than 500 pounds, was described by Men’s Health as “the most powerful winter Olympian” in the lead-up to 2014 Games.
“[Langton’s] work ethic and discipline rubbed off on the other athletes and made everyone better,” said USA Bobsled & Skeleton Chief Executive Officer Darrin Steele. “I have no doubt that he’ll find success in the next chapter of his life as well.”
Langton appeared on “The Amazing Race” in 2015 with his girlfriend, Aly Dudek, an Olympic short track speedskater.
None of the push athletes on the current U.S. roster have Olympic experience. Holcomb will compete in the World Cup opener this Saturday with Sam McGuffie, a former University of Michigan football player. The race will be McGuffie’s World Cup debut.