Jamaica women’s bobsled team challenges for Olympic spot
Jamaica is in position to qualify an Olympic women’s bobsled team for the first time after achieving its best-ever elite international result Saturday.
But the standings are close, and there are plenty of qualifying races left.
Driver Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian (a 2014 U.S. Olympian) and brakewoman Carrie Russell (a 2013 World 4x100m champion in track and field) finished seventh in a World Cup in Winterberg, Germany.
Jamaica jumped from two spots out of the Olympic field to provisionally in the Olympic field by a small margin over a Romanian sled.
Qualifying races run to mid-January, but Saturday’s result could prove a game-changer.
Fenlator-Victorian and Russell competed in a sled Saturday that’s named “Mr. Cool Bolt” after “Cool Runnings” and Usain Bolt, according to International Bobsled and Skeleton Federation announcers.
They became the first Jamaican women to compete on the World Cup in 16 years.
Eleven Jamaicans have competed at the Winter Olympics -- all men, and all bobsledders save ski cross racer Errol Kerr in 2010, according to Olympic historians.
Fenlator-Victorian, 32, announced her plan to switch representation to Jamaica (where her father is from) in 2015.
The year before, she finished 11th in her Olympic debut in Sochi with two-time Olympic track and field athlete Lolo Jones.
Fenlator-Victorian made here race debut for Jamaica in November 2016, posting second- and third-place finishes on the lower-level North American Cup before Saturday’s World Cup debut.
The seventh-place finish Saturday put Jamaica 24 points ahead of Romania for the last Olympic spot, but there are plenty of races left in qualifying and 24 points can be made up in one race.
Jamaica is also vying to qualify in two-man bobsled for Pyeongchang after making the Olympics in 2014 for the first time since 2002.
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