Winter Olympics - BobsledCourtesy of The United States Olympic Committee
There is some dispute over where bobsleigh originated. For years, it was universally acknowledged that bobsleigh had begun in Switzerland in the late 1800s. A few years prior to the Nagano Games, however, evidence was discovered that lumber sleds had been raced in Albany, N.Y., in the 1880s -- perhaps a few years before the sport was started in Switzerland. The sport's governing body, the Federation Internationale de Bobsleigh et Tobagganing (FIBT), was founded in 1923.
Bobsleigh debuted at the 1924 Olympic Winter Games in Chamonix and has been contested at every Games since, with the exception of the 1960 Squaw Valley Games, where the event was not held because there was no track. In 1924 and 1928, only the four-man event was held. In fact, at the 1928 Games, the four-man event was contested as a five-man event. The two-man event was added at the 1932 Lake Placid Games. Women will compete for the first time at the Salt Lake Games.
The Olympic bobsleigh competition consists of three events: two-man, four-man and two-woman.
The two-man event was first contested in 1932 and has appeared at every Olympic Winter Games since, with the exception of the 1960 Games at Squaw Valley, where no bobsleigh events were held.
The four-man event was first contested at the inaugural Olympic Winter Games in 1924 and has appeared at every Winter Games since, with the exception of 1960.
The two-woman event is being held for the first time at the 2002 Games.