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Jamaican bobsled coach quits, team will still race

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Jamaica’s bobsled driving coach, Sandra Kiriasis, has left the team just days before competition begins in the PyeongChang Winter Games. The coach’s departure will not affect the team’s participation in the games, despite previous reports that the team’s equipment, including the sled, belonged to Kiriasis.

A Jamaican bobsled rep said the woman’s team would not be affected by the coach’s departure, and would be using the same equipment.

Jo Manning and Dudley Stokes are the head coaches of the team. They remain on board. According to the bobsled rep, the team will continue in the driving coach’s absence.

The BBC reported Kirasis, who was an Olympic bobsled champion for Germany in 2006, refused a request to change roles from driving coach to track performance analyst, which would have given her no access to the athletes. The BBC also reported the news that the sled belonged to Kirasis. Jamaican officials denied that information.

This will be the first women’s team to compete for Jamaica at the Winter Games. Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian will pilot the sled with teammate Carrie Russell. The men have sent six teams, including the squad that inspired the movie Cool Runnings.

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Bobby Joe Morrow, triple Olympic sprint champion, dies at 84

Bobby Joe Morrow
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Bobby Joe Morrow, one of four men to win the 100m, 200m and 4x100m at one Olympics, died at age 84 on Saturday.

Morrow’s family said he died of natural causes.

Morrow swept the 100m, 200m and 4x100m at the 1956 Melbourne Olympics, joining Jesse Owens as the only men to accomplish the feat. Later, Carl Lewis and Usain Bolt did the same.

Morrow, raised on a farm in San Benito, Texas, set 11 world records in a short career, according to World Athletics.

He competed in one Olympics, and that year was named Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year while a student at Abilene Christian. He beat out Mickey Mantle and Floyd Patterson.

“Bobby had a fluidity of motion like nothing I’d ever seen,” Oliver Jackson, the Abilene Christian coach, said, according to Sports Illustrated in 2000. “He could run a 220 with a root beer float on his head and never spill a drop. I made an adjustment to his start when Bobby was a freshman. After that, my only advice to him was to change his major from sciences to speech, because he’d be destined to make a bunch of them.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Johnny Gregorek runs fastest blue jeans mile in history

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Johnny Gregorek, a U.S. Olympic hopeful runner, clocked what is believed to be the fastest mile in history for somebody wearing jeans.

Gregorek recorded a reported 4 minutes, 6.25 seconds, on Saturday to break the record by more than five seconds (with a pacer for the first two-plus laps). Gregorek, after the record run streamed live on his Instagram, said he wore a pair of 100 percent cotton Levi’s.

Gregorek, the 28-year-old son of a 1980 and 1984 U.S. Olympic steeplechaser, finished 10th in the 2017 World Championships 1500m. He was sixth at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials.

He ranked No. 1 in the country for the indoor mile in 2019, clocking 3:49.98. His outdoor mile personal best is 3:52.94, ranking him 30th in American history.

Before the attempt, a fundraiser was started for the National Alliance on Mental Illness, garnering more than $29,000. Gregorek ran in memory of younger brother Patrick, who died suddenly in March 2019.

“Paddy was a fan of anything silly,” Gregorek posted. “I think an all out mile in jeans would tickle him sufficiently!”

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