Despite its size, the Jamaican bobsledding community is one of the islands more famous sporting groups. When the first bobsled team registered for the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary, Canada, they were an improbable novelty and an ultimate underdog. Years of hard work, however, have resulted not just in the now well-known Disney movie “Cool Runnings” but also in varying levels of real success on the international stage.
The team placed ahead of the United States, Russia and other well-established bobsled teams in the 1992 Winter Olympics. They also took gold in the 2000 World Push Competition held in Monaco. There is no snow in Jamaica; therefore the Jamaican Bobsleigh Federation is located in Evanston, Wyoming. In the past ‘push’ training camps have taken place on the island at G. C. Foster College in Spanish Town. Chosen athletes have then been taken to Wyoming, Utah, and New York’s Lake Placid to train on ice. The Army, which fielded all the original bobsledders on American businessman George Fitch’s Jamaican team, still retains a strong presence in the sport.