Keep Hoosier Lugers Olympic Dream Alive

We would like to introduce ourselves to you as the Hoosier Lugers (it rhymes). We are Emma and Rachel Bowling, residents of the Near-Eastside of Indianapolis, and we have recently been named to the US Junior National Luge D Team!

What does that mean? In short, it means that if we continue our training in the sport of luge, and compete well when the time comes, we just might have a shot of making the national team one day, or maybe even going on to the Olympics.

How did two girls from the prairie flatlands get involved in winter mountain sports? USA luge set up a nationwide search involving about 1200 kids, which included about 300 in Indianapolis. In Indy, a mock luge course was set up on the soap-box derby hill on the west side. Out of the hundreds that tried, about 60 kids, age 10 "“ 12 were asked to come and try out the real thing on ice in Lake Placid, NY as part of a screening camp for the team. Of those 60, about 20 were selected for the development team (D team). These are the ones who show promise and who stand a chance of progressing all the way onto the top teams one day. In general, it takes up to ten years to learn the sport and to be able to compete on an international level. The Junior D team is only the first step.

Right now the development program requires lots of dedication and time. The D team will spend approximately nine to twelve weeks out of the year, mostly in winter, practicing in Lake Placid. During this time we stay in the Olympic Training Center (OTC) with other Olympic teams and athletes. We do strength and agility training, team building, sled care and maintenance, practice starts in USA Luge's refrigerated indoor start facility, and practice sliding on the combined luge and bobsled track at the Olympic Sports Complex. The track is about one mile long and top athletes can reach speeds upwards of 90 miles per hour! For us, the 50's are more our speed.

Are you excited? We are! But here's where we need your help. For upper level and elite athletes, the USOC and USA Luge fund most of the costs for room and board at the OTC, equipment, and program fees. However, for beginners and developing athletes, the costs are all on us. These include the equipment; speed suit ($200), helmet($350), booties, and gloves; room and board at the OTC for approximately 70 nights ($45/night), a program fee($600), and travel to and from Lake Placid several times a year. All of these costs may prove to be simply too much for us to continue pursuing luge if we don't have help.
  • Bob Weaver 
    • $25 
    • 88 mos
  • Jess Bell 
    • $75 
    • 89 mos
  • Kurz Family 
    • $25 
    • 89 mos
  • Matthew Belsaas 
    • $50 
    • 89 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $100 
    • 89 mos
See all

Organizer

Josh Bowling 
Organizer
Indianapolis, IN
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