Check one off the bucket list for pro golfer Olin Browne.
The 60-year-old took a break from the Shaw Charity Classic on Wednesday to join another elite squad — Canada’s national bobsleigh team.
Browne caught some attention at WinSport after tweeting his admiration for the bobsleigh, skeleton and luge events back in July.
“Those are, in my opinion, marquis events in the Olympics,” Browne explained.
Browne and his caddie, Sandy Armour, rode shotgun in the Green Machine, one of Canada Olympic Park’s summer bobs, with Olympians Christine de Bruin, Kori Hol and Alysia Rissling ready to show him the ropes.
“The best reaction is when they swear, to be honest,” Hol said with a smile. “That or when they have their hands over their knees, shaking their heads like, ‘What did I just do to myself?'”
The pair kept their cool as de Bruin navigated the 10 turns made famous by the Jamaican Bobsleigh team during the 1988 Olympics.
“Christine, the pilot, asked us if we wanted smooth or speed,” Browne said. “My answer was speed because smooth is easy. I just wanted to experience what it was like. These are the elite athletes of this sport and they gave us a real treat.”
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“Everybody thinks it’s like a roller-coaster but it really isn’t,” de Bruin explained. “You’re smashing your head side to side, you’re feeling those g-pressures and it’s not on tracks — so anything can happen.”
Unfazed, Browne was ready with the quips as he exited the sled.
“As the saying goes — shaken, not stirred!”
The group made it down the track in 50.27 seconds, reaching more than 77 kilometres an hour.
Not bad for a beginner, but the pros say they could double that speed in a winter bobsleigh.
“In winter in my two-man, I could probably get up to 130 kilometres an hour with the right ice conditions,” Rissling said. “But, I’ll give Olin the benefit of a doubt. He was confident through and through the whole way and kept that persona going. He did great and I think he could handle it on the big sled.”
Browne may be headed back to the golf greens, but he hasn’t ruled out a return to the bobs in the future.
“I just hope the greens aren’t as fast as that run. If they aren’t, I think we’ll be okay this week.”
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