Canada’s Bobsleigh Athletes Gain New Race Opportunities
September 25, 2014
—FIBT takes step to open four-man bobsleigh to mixed-gender and women teams—
CALGARY—Canada’s women’s bobsleigh athletes will have increased opportunities to develop their skills and race against the world’s best on the elite stage, following a decision announced on Thursday by the FIBT that will allow mixed-gender and women’s teams to compete in four-man races.
“The ruling by the FIBT allows us to provide greater opportunities for our athletes which will ultimately increase development and lead to more medals for Canada,” said Sarah Storey, president, Bobsleigh Canada Skeleton. “We also believe this decision gives our elite women additional opportunities to showcase their talents on the international stage, which in turn will help continue to grow the sport in Canada.”
Canada’s two-time Olympic gold medal-winning pilot in women’s bobsleigh, Kaillie Humphries, was instrumental in encouraging the FIBT to provide women with the opportunity to race the four-man bobsleigh discipline – a race previously done only by men.
“This is an absolutely amazing day and something I have been very passionate about happening over the last two years,” said Humphries. “We live in an age now where it has become more and more acceptable in many sports to have women compete with the men.
“Not every woman will want to accept the challenge and the same will be said for the guys, but I’m personally one that has always pushed the limits and I am very fortunate enough to have the athletic ability and support of many people and groups to take on the challenge and see what is possible. You don’t know what is possible until you try so I am stoked!”
Humphries has completely rewritten the record books over the last four years where she became the first Canadian woman to win two Olympic and World Championship titles in the sport. Along the way she also set a new record for wins-in-a-row at nine, and went on to reach the podium in 15 straight races - 11 of them victories.
“Every athlete wants to have a legacy and this is something I believe strongly in. This will help bridge the gap between having another event for women in our sport, but more importantly be huge in growing our sport for women, and developing my skills as a pilot.”
Bobsleigh CANADA Skeleton is a non-profit organization and the national governing body for the sports of bobsleigh and skeleton in Canada. With the support of its valued corporate partners – Adidas, Eurotech – Viking Engineering, BMW Canada, The Globe and Mail, Conceptum Sport Logistics, Therapeutica – along with the Government of Canada, Own the Podium, and SAIT Polytechnic. Bobsleigh CANADA Skeleton develops Olympic and world champions. Please visit us at www.bobsleighcanadaskeleton.ca.