Chris Langton (Melrose, MA), a former standout lacrosse player for Cornell University, has been named to the US Bobsled team as push athlete. He joins 10 others as push athletes and joins his brother, Mike, on the team. Mike was a push athlete in 2010 for the US and was a member of the 2013 World Champion team. Three pilots were also named to the team, rounding the group out at 14 members.
Dallas Robinson is another former athlete hailing from a different sport, as he had seen success in track and field before making the switch to Bobsled. For more on who made the team, check out Team USA’s site.
Pilots obviously steer the bobsleds down the course, and the push athletes get the sled going, and lean during turns for balance and increased speed. There is also a break man, who is also a push athlete, and they obviously apply the breaks when needed. Sleds are a little over 12 feet long, and since there is a maximum overall weight, the pushers must be fast, and heavy, but not too heavy.
The sleds can travel at 80 mph down an iced track, which is, quite frankly, terrifying. At least it seems terrifying:
Good luck to Chris as he tries to bring Olympic gold back to the States from Sochi!