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BMW building a new 2-man sled for USBSF

Associated Press Modified: November 14, 2012 at 4:30 am •  Published: November 14, 2012

Some U.S. drivers, including reigning Olympic and world champion Steven Holcomb, tested the prototype sled on the 2002 Olympic track in Park City, Utah, earlier this year. There's been no announcement about when the sled would make a competitive debut later this season in a World Cup race; this weekend's stop on that circuit is in Park City.

Scully did not know much about bobsledding when his role with the project began, though he had a background that made him perfectly suited for the role. He's an accomplished athlete, both in auto racing and alpine sports — combine them, and essentially, you have bobsledding.

He's even taken a run down the track in Lake Placid, N.Y., thinking at the time he'd be able to snap pictures and enjoy a smooth ride. One turn into that trip, he dropped the camera into the sled and began hoping merely to survive the intensely bumpy ride.

"I got exposed to something at the bobsled track I wished I'd gotten exposed to 25 years earlier," Scully said. "It's the coolest thing I've ever seen. It's such a wonderful sport."

Scully's goal now is simple: He wants to help build a sled that gets Americans to the medal stand in Sochi.

"This whole project is about delivering the fastest tool that we can deliver to the athletes," Scully said. "It really is about us trying to provide them with the very best equipment."

BMW says its "EfficientDynamics" technology that works for cars is being applied to the sled plan, with lightweight materials, "optimized aerodynamics and chassis dynamics," and all of it being done to increase "overall sport performance."

"We're no strangers to sport performance characteristics such as agility, speed and aerodynamics," said Ludwig Willisch, the president and chief executive officer for BMW of North America. "To be involved in a project with opportunity for such direct transfer of our core competencies to the advancement of Team USA was a very exciting proposition for us. We can't wait to see this finished sled on the ice."