Just in case you missed it, a heart-warming story unfolded this week involving an unlikely combination of bobsled, Jamaica, virtual currency, crowdfunding and generosity. It has all the makings of an inspiring Disney movie — er, an inspiring Disney sequel. Last Sunday, news began trickling out that a two-man bobsled team from the island nation of Jamaica had qualified for the Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia.
The country’s official Twitter account for the 2014 games announced the news that the team had qualified, including an image that appeared to be a reference to Cool Runnings, the John Candy-led cult film that loosely chronicled Jamaica’s debut in bobsled for the 1988 Olympic Games in Alberta, Canada.
The world apparently loves a sequel. In a plot twist seemingly right out of Cool Runnings, despite qualifying for the 2014 Olympics, team captain Winston Watts told the New York Times that the team hadn’t been able to raise the necessary funds to make it to Russia. Watts said that he had essentially been self-funding the team’s efforts thus far, and had even dug into his personal savings to fly the team to the U.S. for the bobsledding qualifiers. Nevertheless, after finding little help from the Jamaican Olympic Association or private investors, the team was forced to turn elsewhere.