BY GODWIN AIKIGBE
History-making Nigeria women bobsled team will soon be officially be informed by Nigeria Olympic Committee whether or not they’ll actually get to compete at the next year’s Winters Olympics holding in February in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
American-born children of Nigerian immigrants Ngozi Onwumere, Seun Adigun and Akuoma Omeoga recently qualified to represent Nigeria in the bobsledding competition at the event, which has brought the three friends a great deal of attention from the media,as well as plenty of joking references to the 1993 movie Cool Runnings.
If they get the country’s approval, they will be the first African team to participate in the event at Winter Olympics.
The qualification of Nigeria — where temperatures are currently upwards of 35 degress Celsius (95 degrees Fahrenheit) — has inevitably drawn comparisons with Jamaica’s participation in the 1988 Games in Calgary, Canada, which led to the 1993 Hollywood film “Cool Runnings”.
Driver Seun Adigun, brakewomen Ngozi Onwumere and Akuoma Omeoga, have done little to play down the comparison.
They crowd-funded the $150,000 (130,000 euros, £114,000) required to train and compete and through a mixture of savvy marketing and publicity have developed a strong online profile that has helped attract sponsorship from Visa and sportswear manufacturer Under Armour.