Jamaica women’s bobsleigh team driver Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian was overcome by emotion as she stressed the importance of being role models for children of colour as they participate in the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang.
The Jamaican team has earned plenty of plaudits for just taking part in the winter games, despite hailing from a tiny island in the Caribbean Sea where it never snows.
In fact, the all-black female team, which also consists of former sprinters Carrie Russell and Audra Segree, will find themselves in the minority when the competition gets under way later this month, but Fenlator-Victorian hopes their participation will serve as motivation for young children who may watch the team attempt to defy the odds in the snowy sport.
“It’s important to me, that little girls and little boys see someone that looks like them, talks likes them, has the same culture as them has crazy curly hair and wears it natural, has brown skin included in different things in this world,” Fenlator-Victorian said.
“When you grow up and you don’t see that you feel that you can’t do it and that is not right. So coming back home to Jamaica I wanted my Jamaican people to see that they can do it and that there’s not just one path this way or one path that way to get out of poverty or to make money or to make a name for themselves,” she added.
“If they want to be a Winter Olympian and do alpine skiing, now they see their fellow Jamaicans in the Winter Olympics.”