The two-time Olympic hurdler, 30, has earned a spot on the 2012-13 U.S. national bobsled team after a three-week tryout in Lake Placid, N.Y., Thursday morning. And Jones isn't the only Summer Olympian to be making a transition to the ice. Gold medalist Tianna Madison, who was part of the record-setting women's 4 x 100-meter relay this summer in London, was also named as one of six women's bobsled push athletes.
Jones and Madison will utilize their speed and strength to ready the sled and push it down the icy track, and that's something that women's bobsled head coach Todd Hays welcomes.
"Lolo and Tianna accepted the challenge to compete for a spot on the team, and they did an incredible job," he said. "They are just tenacious competitors that want to win at everything they do. It wouldn't matter if it was ping pong, checkers or bobsled they still want to be the best."
A world indoor champion and American record-holder in the women's 100-meter hurdles, Jones told The Associated Press that she didn't want to come into the camp as a distraction but wanted to simply try her hand in a different realm of Olympic sport.
"I just came out here and kind of needed to get away from track for a bit, kind of wanted to get some motivation," Jones told The Associated Press. "I thought coming out here with the other girls that we could help each other, we could benefit from one another. I could help them with their speed and they could help me with my strength. And just being around them, hearing their goals, gave me new goals and refreshed me."
After disappointing outings in the Beijing Games in 2008 (seventh place) and the London Games (fourth place) this summer, Jones has her eye set on Sochi 2014.
Veteran Elana Meyers, who received a bye in the tryouts for this year's team following her World Championship bronze medal performance last season, will pilot the USA I sled. Jamie Greubel won both selection races to cement her position as pilot of USA II, while Jazmine Fenlator was named to USA III in her third season as a bobsled driver.
Along with Jones and Madison, four other women were named as part of push-athlete roster: 2010 Olympian Emily Azevedo, World Championship medalist Katie Eberling, current Lake Placid start record holder Aja Evans, and former University of California Berkeley track athlete Cherrelle Garrett.
While the men compete in both two- and for-man sleds, the women compete only in two-person sleds in competition.
"All six athletes are exceptional and will be competing for the USA I position," Hays said. "We will have a strategy to rotate athletes in the sleds throughout the season based on what track we're on and how they fit with particular drivers. The good news is that we also have three drivers that will be fighting for the gold medal at each stop. It's like we have three USA I sleds. It's going to be competitive."
On the men's side of the bobsled track, Park City's Steven Holcomb, who is coming off a World Championship gold-medal double last season, will man the men's team USA I sled. Nick Cunningham, a National Guardsman, earned his position at the helm of USA II after sweeping team selection races, while Cory Butner will pilot USA III.
This year's male push athletes feature Holcomb's world championship push crew of Steve Langton, Justin Olsen and Curt Tomasevicz.
This year's World Cup circuit is scheduled to kick off on Thursday, Nov. 8, in Lake Placid, N.Y. Park City will host the second stop of the World Cup on Nov. 16-17 at the Utah Olympic Park. On Friday, Nov. 16, women's skeleton is scheduled to kick off the races at 9 a.m. The men's' two-man bobsled is scheduled for 1 p.m., while the women's bobsled is scheduled for 5 p.m. On Nov. 17, the men's skeleton is scheduled for 9 a.m., while the men's four-man bobsled at 1 p.m.