Jan 1, 2014, 9:13 AM EDT
Both Lolo Jones and Lauryn Williams were chosen as push athletes for this weekend’s bobsled World Cup stop in Winterberg, Germany.
Jones, the two-time Olympic hurdler, will be in the top U.S. sled with World Cup leader Elana Meyers for the first time this season.
The No. 2 U.S. sled will feature a Jamie Greubel–Aja Evans combo.
Williams, the three-time Olympic sprinter, is with Jazmine Fenlator in the third American sled.
The U.S. Bobsled and Skeleton Federation has been alternating pairings this season to determine which driver and push athlete teams mesh the best. Winterberg is the fourth World Cup event.
Evans and Katie Eberling came into the season favored for two of the likely three push athlete spots at the Sochi Olympics. The U.S. Olympic Team will be chosen after a World Cup stop in Igls, Austria, that concludes Jan. 19.
Jones and Emily Azevedo were thought to be vying for the third spot, but Williams has entered the picture in her rookie season, too.
Don’t read too much into Jones pairing with Meyers for Sunday, but it’s certainly more promising for her Olympic selection chances than if she was sitting out. Ditto for all of the push athletes.
On the men’s side, the next three World Cup events before the U.S. Olympic Team is named will be a proving ground for reigning Olympic four-man champion Steven Holcomb.
Holcomb dominated the North American World Cup circuit, winning all seven races over two- and four-man competition. He can cement his status as Olympic gold-medal favorite with more podium finishes in Europe, where he hasn’t won a World Cup or World Championships race in nearly four years.
Holcomb begins with a two-man competition on Friday. Universal Sports will provide coverage all weekend.
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