U.S. wins women's bobsled bronze, giving Elana Meyers Taylor historic 5th Winter Olympics medal

Team USA's Elana Meyers Taylor won a historic bronze medal at the two-woman bobsled event, becoming the most decorated Black athlete in Winter Olympics history, with five medals.

Meyers Taylor, teaming up with bobsledder Sylvia Hoffman, finished at 4:05:48. She punched her fist in the air as she reached the finish line.

Last week, Meyers Taylor, 37, tied speedskater Shani Davis' record for the most medals -- four -- when she won silver in the women's monobob event, which debuted in Beijing.

"That is overwhelming," Meyers Taylor said. "It's so crazy to hear that stat and know that I'm part of a legacy that's bigger than me."

The USA's Kaillie Humphries, who won the first-ever gold medal in the women's monobob event, finished seventh. Germany went 1-2, with Laura Nolte and Deborah Levi taking gold and Mariama Jamanka and Alexandra Burghardt getting silver.

Heats 1 and 2 on Friday put Meyers Taylor and Hoffman in bronze-medal position, finishing at 2:02:79 -- just 0.74 seconds behind the gold-medal position -- after two clean runs. In the final two runs Saturday, the American duo kept the momentum going, retaining their bronze-medal position after their third (their fastest one at 1:01:13) and fourth (1:01:56).

Meyers Taylor is now a silver and bronze Beijing Olympics medalist, but she almost didn't make it to the starting line of the races. Soon after she landed in Beijing, she tested positive for COVID-19, having to isolate from her son, Nico, for more than a week. She was able to provide two negative tests before training for bobsled began, and was cleared to compete.

The four-time Olympian then came out to win silver in the inaugural monobob, right behind teammate Humphries. She yelled, "We did it" as she came up to the finish of the final run, knowing everything it took for her to medal there.

Meyers Taylor is a three-time silver medal winner -- Sochi 2014 and Pyeongchang 2018 in the two-woman bobsled event and Beijing 2022 in the monobob -- and a two-time bronze medalist -- 2010 Vancouver and 2022 Beijing in two-woman bobsled.

Meyers Taylor, who has raced with 41 different teammates on 14 tracks in 11 countries, hinted at retirement earlier at the Beijing Olympics.

"There's a good chance that it's my last one," Meyers Taylor said.

She will be the flag-bearer at the closing ceremony for Team USA.

"I'm going to take some time and really think about this," Meyers Taylor said. "It's going to be really hard to top this Olympics. Two medals and now closing it out with flagbearer, it's going to be really hard to top that."

Humphries, who received her American passport in December, missed a medal in the two-woman bobsled event, considered her marquee event. She teamed up with Kaysha Love for the race. Humphries, 36, had won a medal in that event in every Olympics she competed in -- golds in 2010 Vancouver and 2014 Sochi and bronze in 2018 Pyeongchang -- for Team Canada.

Three countries have dominated the two-woman bobsled event since its inception at the Winter Olympics in 2002 -- Germany, USA and Canada -- taking the gold between them at every Games.