Tunisia bobsleigh team ready for Cool Runnings moment at Olympics


A bobsleigh team from Tunisia is preparing for its own Cool Runnings moment after qualifying for the Winter Olympics.

The squad from the North African country is going for glory at the Youth Winter Olympics in Gangwon, South Korea.

Joanthan Lourimi, 17, Sophie Ghorbal and Beya Mokrani, both 15, will compete separately in the monobob event on Monday and Tuesday.

They learned bobsleigh after being chosen for a South Korean programme that helped athletes from developing countries train in winter sports.

All three having been taking part in races over the last year and are the only African squad competing in the bobsleigh event after securing qualification last month.

(L-R) Lourimi, Mokrani and Ghorbal. Pic: Tunisia Olympic Winter Team / Facebook

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Lourimi said bobsleigh is an “unknown” sport in Tunisia but is targeting a medal and has already finished in the top five in events in Lillehammer and Innsbruck.

Gorbal and Mokrani also say they’ve fallen in love with the ice and intend to carry on in bobsleigh with the dream of making the 2026 Winter Olympics in Italy.

Their journey from a hot country to the Olympics is reminiscent of the film Cool Runnings, which depicted the true story of the Jamaican bobsleigh team at the 1988 Calgary Games.

The Youth Winter Olympics runs from 19 January to 1 February, with a record 1,900 people taking part.

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