Ryan Bailey posted a top time of 10.05 seconds to win the men’s brakeman 2016 USA Bobsled National Push Championships, powered by BMW, Wednesday at the Ice House in Calgary, Alberta.
A sprinter on the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team, Bailey has launched an attempt to cross over to bobsled. He finished fifth in the 100-meter in London and anchored the 4x100-meter team.
Evan Weinstock, a member of the U.S. national team last season who serves as a volunteer track coach at Stanford University, was Bailey’s closest competition with a time of 10.15 seconds. Two-time world cup medalist Carlo Valdes was third in 10.16 seconds. Reigning push champion Hakeem Abdul-Saboor posted a time of 10.38 seconds for 13th.
Another track star, Tyson Gay, opted to withdraw from individual competition after consulting with USA Bobsled coaches in Calgary. The decision does not end Gay’s crossover attempt, as he still has the option to compete in Friday’s two-man combinations or Saturday’s three-man combinations competition. The 100-meter American-record holder still could make the 2016-17 team, since first-year athletes benefit from a waiver of the rule that requires competition at the push championships in order to compete during the world cup season, which opens the last weekend in November.
Justin Olsen won the men’s driver push championships in record-breaking time. Olsen’s time of 5.04 seconds smashed the former driver’s record of 5.08. The 29-year-old is seeking a spot on his first world cup team as a driver. He competed as a push athlete for eight seasons before switching to the driver’s seat last season, when he competed mostly on the North American Cup circuit.
In his time as a push athlete, Olsen earned Olympic gold in four-man at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games with driver Steven Holcomb and finished 14th in four-man at the Sochi 2014 Games. He also earned world championship gold in 2009 and 2012, as well as bronze in 2011.
Competing in his first year as a pilot, third-year bobsledder Dustin Greenwood was second in the push championship. Two-time Olympian Nick Cunningham finished third.