Bobsleigh saw an explosion in popularity thanks to the Disney film, Cool Runnings. This film was based on the journey to the 1988 Winter Olympics and the very first Jamaican bobsleigh team. In a lighthearted way, it focused on the team’s struggles as they prepared to compete. It also gave an insight into what it takes to be successful in this sport.
Founding member of the 1988 Jamaican bobsleigh team, Devon Harris, told Betway, “The most difficult part of bobsledding in my mind was believing that you could. But the biggest hurdle I had to overcome was my fear of speed and height. I was scared to death, man.” So, looking at Harris, nerves of steel are a most, but what else does it take to succeed at bobsleigh? Let’s take a look.
To win at bobsleigh, you have to focus on speed. Yes, the sleigh and the ice have their roles to play, but that momentum at the beginning really sets the pace. To succeed at bobsleigh, you need to be able to run and run pretty damn fast too!
It is not uncommon for those involved in the sport to have a background in the running. Harris himself was a middle-distance runner, and Turgott (part of the 2022 Jamaican bobsleigh team) is famed for being able to run the 100 meters in just 10.1 seconds. It is this speed that gives any bobsleigh team the best possible start.
While speed matters, it won’t get you very far without strength. When looking at bobsleigh, you may not readily appreciate what a team has to do at the start of a race, but it is pretty amazing when you stop and think about it. Teams take a bobsleigh from a standing start and get into a position where it is traveling at around 90mph!
The combination of speed and strength is what gets the bobsleigh moving at such phenomenal speeds. It is why you will find that many who take part in bobsleigh have backgrounds in sports that also require a degree of strength, such as rugby and American football.
Attention to detail
Brute strength on its own is not enough to win at bobsleigh. When it comes to navigating the track, attention to detail is everything. The driver is responsible for guiding the team while traveling at unbelievable speeds. It is only through using accurate and precise movements that the teams complete the track without a crash.
When looking back to 1988 and Harris and co, they suffered four crashes which ultimately saw them being disqualified. Given the unorthodox training that they underwent, it is little wonder that this outing was a little tricky, to say the least.
The best bobsleigh
Your chances of success are also reliant upon the bobsleigh that you have access to. It would help if you had something lightweight, fast, sleek, and air resistant. Such design compliments both the athletes’ speed and strength, allowing for the best chances of success. You can buy the best bobsleigh materials here.
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