U.S. luger Tucker West has his father Brett to thank for the backyard luge that helped him become the country’s youngest-ever Olympic competitor in the event at 18. He also has his dad to scold for making #TeamTucker into something of an Internet phenomenon.
As you can see from this clip, Brett West said that Tucker is “very single, and he’s a little shy, so you’ll have to reach out to him” on TODAY.
Well … they did.
Brett West knows that he’s going to hear it from his son, as he admitted on Facebook.
Then again, Brett West can reply with more than the usual “I took you into this world,” retort. After all, this NBCOlympics.com profile reveals why Tucker West is known as “The Backyard Luger.”
While watching the luge competition during the Salt Lake Olympics, Tucker’s father, Brett West, said to his seven-year-old son, “That looks like a lot of fun. Is that something you’d like to do?”
The two were so enamored with the sport that they decided to build a luge track in the backyard of their home in the quaint New England town of Ridgefield.
It started with a snow track that they iced down, but it would always melt away. Eventually it evolved into a wooden monstrosity.
Nah. Brett West might still be in trouble.
Lindsey Vonn‘s episode of “Running Wild with Bear Grylls” will air on NBC on Monday at 10 p.m. ET.
From NBC Universal:
“After roaring across crystal-clear waters in a speedboat, Bear and Lindsey must strip down and swim to shore before inching their way along the rugged coastline. After rappelling down a sheer rock wall, the two get inventive and use a spear-gun to traverse a hundred-foot deep chasm. With the sun setting, they collect a dinner of sea urchins and Bear challenges Lindsey to a swimming competition with hilarious results. Along the way Lindsey shares her journey of love, Olympic glory, and displays the focus and determination that has made her one of the most successful female athletes of all time.”
Vonn is returning from a Feb. 27 crash that left her with three significant left knee fractures.
With 76 career World Cup wins, she is 10 shy of the record held by Swedish legend Ingemar Stenmark.
MORE: Lindsey Vonn wants to race men, retire in 2019
Los Angeles Lakers point guard José Calderón retired from Spain’s national team after playing in his fourth Olympics in Rio.
Calderón, 34, earned silver medals in 2008 and 2012 and bronze in 2016 for Spain, which lost to the U.S. in the medal rounds at each of the last three Olympics.
Calderón is one of five Spaniards to play in the last four Olympic tournaments, along with Pau Gasol, Juan Carlos Navarro, Rudy Fernandez and Felipe Reyes.
Calderón came off the bench in Rio and played 25 minutes total in five of the team’s eight games. He’s entering his 12th season in the NBA.
Gasol, who will be 40 years old come Tokyo 2020, has not determined when he will end his international career.
VIDEO: Top basketball moments from Rio Olympics