Getty Images

Elana Meyers Taylor is pregnant, to miss bobsled season

Leave a comment

Elana Meyers Taylor, a triple Olympic bobsled medalist, is due to have her first child in March and will miss this bobsled season.

“It was always my dream to win two gold medals in the 2022 Olympics and place them around the neck of our child,” Meyers Taylor said, according to U.S. Bobsled and Skeleton. “When we were told by doctors that this might not be possible, I put all my efforts into winning two gold medals in 2022. However, they were wrong, and now I have the chance to live this dream. We are excited for our little miracle.”

Meyers Taylor and husband Nic Taylor, a veteran U.S. bobsledder, were married in April 2014 after meeting through the sport in 2011. They have competed together in international four-person bobsled races with Meyers Taylor driving.

Meyers Taylor earned Olympic bronze as a push athlete in 2010, then silver medals as a driver in 2014 and 2018. She also earned world titles in 2015 and 2017.

Meyers Taylor’s longtime Canadian rival, Kaillie Humphries, could also miss the season as she bids to switch representation to the U.S. A Canadian judge ruled against her on Tuesday, though U.S. Bobsled has said it would welcome her should she be released from Bobsleigh Canada.

German Mariama Jamanka, the surprise PyeongChang Olympic gold medalist, has taken over as the world’s top driver, winning last season’s World Cup and world championship titles.

The World Cup season starts in late November.

MORE: Kaillie Humphries loses bid to bobsled for U.S.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Kaillie Humphries loses bid to bobsled for U.S.

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Two-time Olympic bobsled champion Kaillie Humphries‘ bid to switch from Canada to compete for the U.S. was denied by a Calgary judge on Tuesday.

“Humphries has chosen not to avail herself of Bobsled Canada’s dispute resolution,” a judge said, according to the Calgary Herald.

Humphries, a 2010 and 2014 Olympic gold medalist, said she no longer wants to compete for Canada after filing verbal abuse and harassment claims against Canadian coach Todd Hays, a 2002 and 2006 U.S. Olympian and former U.S. coach. She is suing the federation.

A Bobsleigh Canada lawyer said an independent investigation found not enough evidence to substantiate Humphries’ allegations.

“These are matters that should go to the sports tribunals,” the lawyer said of Humphries wanting to switch countries. “They should not be going before a court.”

Canada’s federation refuses to release her.

“Our mandate is to develop world, Olympic champions,” high-performance director Chris Le Bihan said Tuesday, according to CBC. “That’s what we do. Kaillie is obviously a world, Olympic champion. We want Kaillie in our program. Kaillie is obviously going to be a threat in the next Olympics, and there’s nothing we want to see more than Canadians standing on the podium.”

Humphries’ lawyer said after the ruling that they may appeal to the International Bobsled Federation to secure a release under exceptional circumstances of “unreasonable and unsportsmanlike” behavior from Bobsleigh Canada.

“It’s obvious that this is purely anti-competitive on the part of Bobsleigh Canada,” Humphries’ lawyer said. “The actions that they’re taking are simply to hamper Kaillie’s ability to compete for the United States.”

Humphries could be eligible to compete for the U.S. after marrying American bobsledder Travis Armbruster on Saturday.

Three athletes have competed for Canada at an Olympics, then for the U.S. at a later Olympics, but none were medalists for Canada. Humphries is one of Canada’s most accomplished Olympians. She won the 2014 Lou Marsh Trophy, viewed as the nation’s athlete of the year, and carried the flag at the Sochi Winter Games Closing Ceremony.

Humphries, 34, earned a bronze medal in PyeongChang then announced last October that she would take the 2018-19 season off at least in part to strengthen her recent engagement with Armbruster.

“This has been my life, it’s been a 15-year career,” a tearful Humphries said in a CBC video interview last week. “This is everything that I dreamed of since I was a kid, and to know that a country has supported me so strongly, and the people in the country have been so great.”

MORE: USA Bobsled and Skeleton dismisses CEO

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Kaillie Humphries wants to bobsled for U.S. after harassment, abuse claims

Kaillie Humphries
Getty Images
1 Comment

Kaillie Humphries, a two-time Olympic bobsled gold medalist for Canada and one of the top drivers in her sport’s history, is planning to race for the U.S. this coming season and beyond.

Humphries has been seeking her release from Canada for several weeks, and it still has not been received. She is marrying former U.S. men’s bobsledder Travis Armbruster on Saturday, and that would allow her to represent the U.S. in competition — provided she is released by Canada.

Humphries has been estranged from the Canadian bobsled program for more than a year after filing harassment and abuse claims. She did not race last season and hasn’t competed in a major international race since earning bronze at the PyeongChang Olympics.

“They have not provided me a safe place to come back to compete,” Humphries said.

CBC first reported Humphries’ desire to race for the U.S., reporting that she is suing Bobsleigh Canada for blocking her release and breaching their contract relating to athlete and coach code of conduct. Bobsleigh Canada declined to comment on Humphries’ case.

“This has been my life, it’s been a 15-year career,” a tearful Humphries said in a CBC video interview. “This is everything that I dreamed of since I was a kid, and to know that a country has supported me so strongly, and the people in the country have been so great.”

USA Bobsled and Skeleton told Humphries — a two-time world champion and four-time overall World Cup champion — that it would welcome her to the team. She is very close with U.S. women’s bobsledder Elana Meyers Taylor.

Adding Humphries would be a major boost to the U.S. roster. The U.S. women’s program has been one of the best in the world for nearly two decades, but lost Olympic veteran pilot Jamie Greubel Poser to retirement in 2018 and didn’t enjoy its usual level of overall success last season.

There is an urgency to Humphries’ quest for the release. Under international rules she would need it by Sept. 30 to be able to compete for the U.S. this season. The U.S. team is scheduled to begin training on ice in early October, weather permitting.

Humphries has been one of the most dominant bobsledders, the only female driver to win multiple Olympic titles.

MORE: USA Bobsled and Skeleton dismisses CEO

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!