In a sport where speed is at a premium, the best competitors are often those who have the most leg power.
United States Olympic hurdler Lolo Jones was named to the U.S. bobsled team on Saturday, with U.S. Bobsled Federation CEO Darrin Steele calling the team the "fastest ... group of athletes we've ever seen."
Bobsledder Lolo Jones poses for a portrait during the 2013 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summit in Park City, Utah.
Jones will be part of the team for the second straight season. In her first season on the bobsled team, she distinguished herself as a pusher, gaining recognition in the World Cup circuit. Not bad for someone who first touched a sled in October 2012.
As a hurdler, she finished fourth in the 100-meter event in the London Summer Olympics and is considered one of the elite athletes in the women's competition. In the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, she was also one of the favourites for the gold medal, before hitting a hurdle in the finals, eventually finishing a measly seventh.
Jones is not the only women's track athlete to have made the bobsled team in recent years. She is joined by 2004 100-meter silver medalist Lauryn Williams in the team that will seek to qualify for the 2014 Winter Games in the resort city of Sochi, Russia. Williams, who had her first taste of bobsledding in July, finished third in the U.S. Push championships. Williams announced her retirement from track and field after helping the U.S. win the 400-metre relay Olympic gold medal in London, setting a world record in the process.
In 2012, Williams' relay teammate Tianna Madison was also named to the bobsled team, finishing third in a World Cup competition.
Naming track athletes to bobsled teams is nothing new. In 1988, a team of sprinters from Jamaica, a country that has never seen snow, made its debut in the Calgary Winter Olympics. In 1994, the same team finished 14th, ahead of France, Italy, and the United States. They are trying to qualify for Sochi after missing out on the 2006 and 2010 Winter Games.
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