Steven Holcomb’s Olympic legacy

Steven Holcomb

2010 Olympic bobsled champion Steven Holcomb was found dead in his room at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Lake Placid, N.Y. on May 6. He was 37, with pulmonary congestion as a possible cause of death, according to USA Bobsled and Skeleton

Holcomb was arguably the most successful U.S. bobsled pilot of all time. He was the only U.S. pilot to earn three Olympic medals, and ended a 62-year gold-medal drought for the U.S. in four-man with his win at the Vancouver Games.

He died nine months before the PyeongChang Games, which would have been his fourth Olympics. He would likely have been considered a medal favorite after finishing the 2016-17 World Cup season ranked second in two-man and third in four-man.

A look back at Holcomb’s three Olympic appearances: 

2006 Torino Olympics

Holcomb made his Olympic debut in 2006 as a pilot, after failing to make the 2002 U.S. Olympic team as a push athlete. He had the best result for a U.S. pilot in four-man, finishing sixth. He was also 14th in two-man. 

2010 Vancouver Olympics

Holcomb piloted the Night Train sled to the four-man gold medal, ending a 62-year gold-medal drought for the U.S. in the event. He stood on the medal podium with push athletes Justin Olsen, Steve Mesler and Curt Tomasevicz. 

Afterwards, a beaming Holcomb told reporters, “Coming away with a gold medal is just about everything you’d think it would be. A lot of people ask, what’s it like? Exactly like you’d imagine, except times 10.”

Holcomb also finished sixth in two-man in Vancouver.

2014 Sochi Olympics

Holcomb piloted the U.S. to bronze medals in both two-man and four-man in Sochi. He became the first U.S. driver to win two medals at the same Games since 1952, despite competing on what was later diagnosed as a torn Achilles. His two-man bronze medal ended a 62-year medal drought for the U.S. in two-man. 

 

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