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Macklemore, J.R. Celski share unlikely bond

Jan 16, 2014, 11:27 AM EDT

Macklemore AP

Short track speed skater J.R. Celski will return for his second Olympics in February, and he’ll have a Grammy-nominated duo rooting him on.

Celski took a break from short track following winning two bronze medals in 2010, five months after crashing at the Olympic Trials and needing 60 stitches to sew up his leg.

During that break, Celski, of Federal Way, Wash., collaborated on a film titled, “The Otherside,” which looked at the Seattle-area hip-hop scene.

That project included the story of Macklemore and Ryan Lewis. Check out this video from NBC Olympics about their partnership.

“In the lead up to Vancouver, I was really connecting with their music and their message,” Celski said.

Macklemore and Lewis would eventually rise to earn seven Grammy Awards nominations this year.

“That was the first athlete, or anybody really famous at all, to really acknowledge me,” Macklemore said.

Celski said he’s inspired by one of their songs in particular, “Ten Thousand Hours,” the first track on their Billboard No. 1 album released in 2012, “The Heist.”

“To be great at something, you have to have done it for over 10,000 hours,” Celski said. “I’m more dedicated and driven than ever right now.”

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