Shani Davis, 35, is a speed skater for the USA Winter Olympics team. After a coin toss, lead by the US delegation, decided he would not be holding the flag and lead in the opening ceremony Davis boycotted the event.
Luge star Erin Hamlin, 31, lead the team of winter athletes. She was beaming with American pride as she waved our flag in Pyeongchang, South Korea, to the tune of “Gangnam Style.”
Hamlin and Davis were pitted against each other in the coin toss, Davis is one of just a few black athletes on the USA team. The two had tied 4-4 in a vote amongst eight US winter sport federations, so a coin toss gave the ultimate decision.
According to Davis race played a role in the selection and felt he should have been selected.
I am an American and when I won the 1000m in 2010 I became the first American to 2-peat in that event. @TeamUSA dishonorably tossed a coin to decide its 2018 flag bearer. No problem. I can wait until 2022. #BlackHistoryMonth2018#PyeongChang2018pic.twitter.com/dsmTtNkhJs
— Shani Davis (@ShaniDavis) February 8, 2018
How the coin was “dishonorably tossed,” isn’t elaborated by the speed skater.
Hamlin gave a public statement saying she was “honored and excited” to be named flag-bearer, adding “this is something totally different.”
“It’s something that is because of that hard work. People acknowledge that and respect that. It’s a big privilege to represent Team USA,” she said.