Cool Runnings

Published On October 5, 2013 | By Paula Maloney


Explosiveness, pure speed, and an innate sense of timeliness are elements necessary  to compete at the world class level of hurdling. Lolo Jones , a two time Olympic hurdler, is showcasing her stamina as she vies for a position to compete next year at the Sochi Olympics on a different  kind of track: a bobsled track.

“I am inspired by failure” is a philosophy  that a world class athlete such as Jones has chosen to exemplify. Her morale lifting presence on the US Women’s Bobsled training team has not gone unnoticed. The unique and harrowing sport of bobsledding is feeling a resurgence of media coverage that has not been seen since the days of the Jamaican bobsled team making its first ever appearance at the 1988 Olympics.

The Olympic team trials for the United States Women’s bobsled team are due to take place October 12th in none other than Lake Placid, New York.

The setting is moviesque as this upstate New York town  secured its place in Olympic History thanks to  the” Miracle and Ice” Team in 1980. Is history about to be recorded again as the newly muscular but streamlined  Lolo Jones competes on  a gravity powered sled?

Bobsledding is a sport in which the G forces can equal five times a person’s weight. The sport is in stark comparison to the sport of 100 meter hurdling where one is perceived as ” flat ‘ if running with extra weight on board.

“Mass on mass”‘ is a critical component of the build of an elite bobsledder. Speeds on the track can reach a humbling 90 mph and the finish line is cleared in under one minute. Jones is on the fast track of a push athlete by consuming 9,000 calories per day in order to attain needed and necessary strength.

Jones recognized the need for pure muscle to enhance her performance on the track.  Selflessly she  has gained over twenty pounds in order to secure a position and perform as the brakesman  in  a sled that weighs over 400 pounds.

Granted, there have been other female athletes who have competed and medaled in two different disciplines.

Clara Hughes, a Canadian athlete, has won multiple medals in three Olympics in both cycling and speed skating. Hughes is revered in Canada; Lolo Jones, a beautiful athlete to behold whether  at 133 lbs or 157 pounds is the current American face  of what once seemed to be the impossible.

Jones has publicly proclaimed that she wants to compete in both the Winter and Summer Olympics in the bobsled and 100 meters hurdles respectively.

Cool Runnings” was the name of the film about the original  four man Jamaican bobsled team which was parodied by many comedians. The sport of bobsledding may be getting the last laugh to this latest twist in the racing world.

Lolo Jones is making running on a track down an icy and treacherous slope  her own version of cool running.

May the force be with Lolo Jones .







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About The Author

I grew up outside of Boston with three brothers and immersed in sports early on. I studied at Boston University School of Education and spent summers as a lifeguard in Nantucket where I fell in love with the island and currently reside there. I work in real estate and as a broadcaster for Channel 99 covering the local sports scene on the island. I am an avid athlete but my passion is surfing. I have run three Boston Marathons and one New York Marathon which was truly a runner's high.I am the proud mother of Bizzy, in her second year of law school and Molly, a junior in college majoring in communications.