Once, U.S. Olympic speedskaters hailed almost exclusively from the Midwest, from places such as West Allis and Madison and Champaign, Ill., where they grew up skating on frozen ponds or on the wind-whipped outdoor oval at State Fair Park.
Now, check out the 2018 U.S. Olympic long-track team.
Three members of the team that will compete in the Pyeongchang Games are from Ocala, Fla., where ice is found mainly in drinks. Two more are from North Carolina, one is from Houston and still another is from Crestview, Fla.
The team’s southern flavor is due to an influx of inline skaters who have crossed over to the ice. This isn’t a new phenomenon. Inline skater KC Boutiette showed what was possible when he made the 1994 Olympic team after only a few months on the ice.
Read the full article on jsonline.com.