Croatia to Have Two-Man and Four-Man Bobsled Crews at Winter Olympics for First Time!

Daniela Rogulj

Exciting news for the Croatian bobsled team in the upcoming Winter Olympics!

For the first time since Croatia’s independence, in the forthcoming Winter Olympics, which will be held from February 9 to 25, 2018, in Pyongyang, Croatia will have two-man and four-man bobsled crews, reports on January 14, 2018. 

After Dražen Silić and Mate Mezulić took ninth place (2:01.03) in the competition of 13 two-seater bobsled crews at the North American Cup in Lake Placido to secure their qualification for the 2018 Winter Olympics, a day later, Croatia managed to advance with a four-seater squad as well. The Croatian four-man bobsled crew also met the Olympic standard for Pyongyang after placing seventh in the same competition.

Pilot Drazen Silić and pushers Martin Marinić, Mate Mezulić and Damjan Zlatnar, were just two seconds behind the victorious US crew. Even though their second run fared much worse, in total they still managed to place seventh overall in the competition which hosted nine teams.

According to the qualification system for the Winter Olympics in South Korea, there are 30 crews of the two-seater and four-seater bobsled teams by the International Bobsled and Skeleton Federation (FIBT) season 2017/2018. Croatia is in the group of nations eligible to one crew in each of the disciplines mentioned above.

President of the Croatian Bobsled and Skeleton Federation Ivan Šola and his assistants are now tasked with choosing the optimal two-man team. While Drazen Silić is an established pilot in both the two-seater and four-seater bobsled, there are still two possible candidates in the competition – Benedikt Nikpalj and Antonio Zelić.

The four-man bobsled crew should also have a fifth (spare) member, but in practice, it may also be a two-seater member if he is not an impact on the four-seater crew.

Croatia has, therefore, maintained the tradition of performing at the Winter Olympic Games which started for the country at the historic 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. 

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