Shani Davis rips coin flip to determine U.S. flag bearer at Olympics

Saturday, 10 Feb, 2018

Hamlin will be the sixth woman in 23 games to carry the U.S. flag, and the first since 2006.

Remsen native Erin Hamlin is now a star on the worldwide stage after she led Team USA in the Olympics' opening ceremony, but her four-time Olympic career has humble beginnings. Not just does Erin get to hold that flag, but USA Luge gets to hold that flag.

Spokesman Mark Jones said: "The Team USA flag bearer is selected using a detailed selection procedure that is fully driven by athletes". He's also four years older than she is, although she's said that this will be her final Games whereas he hasn't. If, though, he has a reputation for complaining (with this morning's tweet just the latest exhibit), it might explain why he ended up in a tie with Hamlin on the vote to carry the flag instead of winning.

Another U.S. speedskating teammate, Joey Mantia, said the flag-bearer decision was simply a split decision. We vividly remember Bill Demong of Vermontville doing so at the 2010 games in Vancouver, where he had won gold and silver medals in nordic combined.

Hamlin, who is to retire after the Games and became the first United States female luger to win an Olympic medal in Sochi four years ago, said she was "honored and excited" to be named flag-bearer.

Hamlin learned of the voting result Wednesday night. "It's a big privilege to represent Team USA".

"The nerves will be flying for sure", Hamlin said. Put me at the top of the track, that's my happy place.

A Team USA spokesman told NBC that the two-time Olympic champion had initially planned not to march in order to rest ahead of competition, but Davis would have made an exception if he had been chosen to wave the stars and stripes.

"Everyone from home is ready to cheer you on; watching and supporting you". Their animosity toward one another was obvious at a news conference, when Hedrick brought up the team pursuit and Davis stormed out of the room.