BEIJING, China — It's been nearly three decades since Cool Runnings released in theaters across the world. The sports comedy film chronicled the story of an unlikely competitor — the Jamaican bobsled team, bringing a narrative of perseverance to life.
It's also the film that gave Team Jamaica's bobsled crew worldwide recognition, but the squad hasn't received much notoriety since.
Many are wondering: Does Jamaica still have a bobsled team? The answer is yes, the Caribbean island's bobsled team is still competing, and they are set to participate in the 2022 Olympic Games in Beijing.
While the Jamaicans dominate Summer Olympic sports like track and field, the country's team is an underdog when it comes to the Winter Games. However, as the island's popular phrase goes, they're "little, but tallawah." The expression meaning the country is small, but strong-willed.
Team Jamaica is proving the saying to be true. The average February temperature there is in the 80s and visitors are certainly not likely to see snow there, yet they're still competing this Winter Olympics.
Jamaica's four-man bobsled team qualified for the first time since 1998, when they appeared in the event in Nagano, Japan. Now, this February, Jamaica will race in the four-man, two-man, and women's monobob events.
This is the first time in history the tropical country has qualified for three Olympic bobsled events. Jamaica qualified for a bobsled event for the first time ever in 1988, inspiring Cool Runnings.
As for Jamaica's chances, they seem dicey. The team is set to compete against bobsled giants like Germany, Canada, Austria, Switzerland and the United States. But, it may be too soon to count out Jamaica's "tallawah" spirit.
Jamaica's four-man bobsled crew has yet to be confirmed. They have launched a fundraiser to help with the purchase of new bobsleds they can use for the event.