The former Olympic long jump champion — Greg Rutherford — has had his hopes of adding a Winter Olympics medal to his list of achievements dashed this week after his team failed to qualify for the British bobsleigh squad.
Now 35 years old, Greg Rutherford shot to fame at the London Olympic Games, where he earned a gold medal. Following this, he won a bronze medal at the Rio games in 2016.
After seeking new challenges in recent years, Rutherford switched both disciplines and seasons and set out to secure a spot on Britain’s bobsleigh squad. If he had been successful, Rutherford would have joined a club of only seven athletes who have won a medal at both a summer and winter games.
Rutherford made his international bobsleigh debut at the World Cup race in Winterburg, Germany, where he secured a 17th place finish out of 21 competitors. Rutherford joined a squad piloted by Lamin Deen.
The squad failed to achieve three top twelve finishes in the World Cup season, which is the qualification standard for the games.
As such, Rutherford’s hopes of breaking into the history books have been all but dashed.
This does not mean Britain is entirely out of medal contention, however. Brad Hall will lead the British bobsleigh team in Beijing, which has already been identified as a medal hopeful. Hall’s team secured three podium placings and is ranked fourth in the overall world standings following a stellar performance last season.
However, it will not be plain sailing for Hall’s team by any stretch of the imagination. There is still considerable uncertainty regarding this year’s bobsleigh track at the Olympic Park, which the athletes will have little familiarity with.
Despite this, Hall is confident moving into the 2022 Beijing games and is already predicting a British upset.