Carlo Valdes of Newport Beach will be among the pushers for the four-man bobsled piloted by Justin Olsen which will take its first two runs at the Winter Olympics Friday.
The first heat at the Olympic Sliding Centre in Pyeongchang, South Korea, is set for 4:30 p.m. (PST) and the second at 6:07 p.m. The heats will be part of NBC’s prime-time coverage.
The team will make its final two runs Saturday.
The 27-year-old Valdes was introduced to bobsledding by Andreas Drbal, a U.S. national team member who had been a track and field teammate at UCLA.
Valdes began his bobsledding career in 2014 and was the 2015 USA Men’s Bobsled Rookie of the Year for the 2014-15 season. He has won eight medals in World Cup races.
The other pushers on the team are Chris Fogt, a member of the four-man bobsled crew that won a bronze medal in the 2014 Sochi Olympics, and Nathan Weber, a U.S. Army special forces operative.
Olsen was a member of the four-man bobsled team that won the gold medal in the 2010 Vancouver Games. He piloted a two-man bobsled team to a 14th- place finish Monday, 14 days after undergoing an emergency appendectomy.