A four-man bobsled team will compete for Jamaica during the 2022 Beijing Olympics. This marks the first time Jamaica will participate in bobsleigh events since the 1998 Winter Olympics, and the first time the country has qualified for three different bobsled events in total. According to ABC News, Jamaican athletes will also push for gold with a two-man bobsled team for the first time, in addition to a female Jamaican athlete competing in the monobob competition, an event making its Olympic debut this year.
“We’re absolutely over the moon,” Shanwayne Stephens, the Jamaican Olympic bobsled team’s pilot, told the news outlet. “It’s been a lot of struggles over the last four years to obviously achieve what we’ve achieved and we’ve done absolutely everything in our power and everybody’s come together as one team to be able to qualify for the games.”
JAMAICA, WE HAVE A BOBSLED TEAM HEADING TO BEIJING! ?
It will be fire on ice as #TeamJamaica ?? secured their spot at the 2022 Beijing #WinterOlympics. This will be the 1st time JAM has qualified in 3 Olympic bobsled events: four-man, two-man and women’s monobob pic.twitter.com/hRd5h7lDlG
— Team Jamaica (@TeamJA876) January 17, 2022
Stephens continued, “It’s been absolutely amazing and everybody is really excited and can’t wait to get to Beijing and perform.”
Team Jamaica is also set to compete in the skiing event. Benjamin Alexander made history by being the first Jamaican skier to qualify for the Winter Olympic Games in giant slalom (alpine skiing) under the B criteria, according to the Team Jamaica Twitter account.
(? Kristina Brik) pic.twitter.com/2gOrB3Yrhj
— Team Jamaica (@TeamJA876) January 15, 2022
The 2022 Beijing Olympics are set to begin with the Opening Ceremony on February 4 and continue through February 20. The global competition will start two days prior to the Opening Ceremony with preliminary games in curling and ice hockey.
According to NPR, China has implemented several rules and procedures to prevent the Olympic games from spreading COVID-19. Measures include designated drivers for athletes and journalists, mandatory daily testing, automated cooking machines, closed living quarters, vaccination requirements, and more.
“Presently, we are operating smoothly and everything is under control. As of yet, we have no plans to lock down Beijing and seal the city,” said Huang Chen, a health officer at the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Games.
View the schedule for the 2022 Beijing Olympics here.