Olympic hurdler Lolo Jones, who has received criticism for receiving more attention for her appearance than results on the track, tried out bobsledding Friday.
Jones, of Baton Rouge, La., joined a group of Olympic track and field athletes who competed in the U.S. women's bobsled push championships at Lake Placid, N.Y. Jones tied for seventh. Olympians Hyleas Fountain (fourth) and Tianna Madison (tied for fifth) also participated.
U.S. bobsled coach Todd Hays told Associated Press that he invited trio to compete so they could "share their Olympics experiences with our athletes and to help boost team morale."
Former Cal sprinter Cherrelle Garrett of Hayward was third.
"When I heard about bobsled, I thought, 'This is something I can do,' " she told reporters. "Look at all of these great athletes here; I'm so excited to be here. It feels like this is where I should be."
Jones, 30, had returned to the news this week when challenging former Rutgers football player Eric LeGrand to a race on Twitter, saying afterward she did not know LeGrand had a serious spinal cord injury in 2010.
LeGrand said he did not take it personally, in a tweet to Jones.
"This stuff between @lolojones is ridiculous, she is a great person who misunderstood what I tweeted," he wrote. "People stop bashing her it's not right"
Jones finished fourth in the 100-meter hurdles at the London Games four years after hitting a hurdle and taking seventh in Beijing.
Also on Friday, Monterey Olympian Nick Cunningham won the bobsled pilot push competition ahead of Olympic and world champion Steven Holcomb.
"Today was really day one of the season, and my goal over the offseason was to carry the momentum from last year into this season," Cunningham told reporters. "My training partners held me accountable this summer, and we really push each other to get better.
"We're all pretty pumped to get on the ice, and we plan on putting a team together that can rival the best in the world."
Contact Elliott Almond at 408-920-5865 and follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/elliottalmond.