An Olympic medal is still missing from Lolo Jones’ trophy case, so the track and field hurdler decided to mix things up and attack from a different angle: In a bobsled.
Jones clipped a hurdle in 100m hurdles final and finished seventh at the Beijing Games. In London she ran a clean race but placed fourth.
This week, Jones pushed a bobsled on wheels in Lake Placid. Numbers were crunched and the competitors’ times were analyzed. The U.S. coaching staff would select the athletes that would compete this season.
You know where this is going. Jones made the team.
“This is a breath of fresh air — cool, very cool, cold air,” said Jones, who is joined on the team by American sprinter Tianna Madison, who won a 4x100m relay gold medal in London.
Jones is certainly not the first hurdler to dabble in bobsled. Nor is she first world-class athlete to do so. Former NFL running back Herschel Walker made the 1992 Olympic team and finished seventh with driver Brian Shimer. (Walker is also a black belt in tae kwon do and almost made the summer Olympics at one point as a sprint relay member.)
Jones said she wants to compete at the 2014 Sochi Olympics in bobsled and then return, less than two years later, to the track at the 2016 Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro. Let’s assume, for the sake of this blog post, Jones wins a medal at both of those Games. That would put her in a small group of athletes to have accomplished that feat. The others:
– Eddie Eagan, United States: Boxing (1920) and bobsled (1932)
– Jacob Tullin Thams, Norway: Sailing (1936) and ski jumping (1924)
– Christa Rothenburger-Luding, East Germany and Germany: Cycling (1988) and speed skating (1984, 1988, 1992)
– Clara Hughes, Canada: Cycling (1996) and speed skating (2002, 2006, 2010)