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techkenyot.com January 18, 2019


Bobsleigh: Not so Cool Runnings as 'destructive' coach quits Jamaica team

15 February 2018, 08:03 | Henrietta Morgan

Modal Trigger Jamaica's Audra Segree right hugs coach Sandra Kiriasis. EPA

Jamaica’s miracle bobsled team in jeopardy after coach quits

The Jamaican Bobsleigh & Skeleton Federation commissioned We Launch to rebrand the team to coincide with the 2018 Olympic Winter Games, which is now taking place in PyeongChang, South Korea.

"Sandra Kiriasis has elected not to continue her position with Jamaica Bobsleigh", said the Jamaican Bobsled Federation (JBSF).

And, according to BBC, she could take the team's sled with her.

"After some distorted facts have appeared in the media concerning my departure as coach of the Jamaican ladies bobsleigh team, I would like to put some things straight", Kiriasis said in a statement on her Facebook page.

However, their dream has been thrown into doubt after Kiriasis - a former Olympic champion - walked away from her role and started a dispute over who owns the sled.

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"I've never known such disappointment in this sport, in my life", she added.

"Come start time we're going to be at the top of the hill, we're going to have a competitive sled, the team is going to be ready and we'll have a good performance".

It had been reported that her decision to quit came after learning that her coaching role was to be changed.

JBSF official Kathleen Pulito told The Gleaner that team unity has improved since the departure of Kiriasis.

JBSF President Christian Stokes insisted that was not the case and the women's team, making their maiden Winter Olympic Games appearance, would not pull out of the event.

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The team was unveiled as a collection of firsts, what with Carrie Russell and Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian, who piloted for Team USA in the 2014 Sochi Games, headlining Jamaica's debut contingent of female Winter Olympic athletes. Due to the astronomical success of 1993 film Cool Runnings, Olympic viewers, sponsors and reporters know about the Jamaican bobsleigh and skeleton teams.

'We are deeply disappointed in her decision to leave the program.

Unfortunately, the team is now clouded in drama after the apparent ousting of the team's driving coach Sandra Kiriasis. And she's apparently threatening to keep the sled that was to be used by Jamaica in the 2018 Winter Games.

"Now that she is off the team, synergy is much better, tension is down and athletes are now able to focus in a much healthier environment".

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