February 21, 2018

Luger Erin Hamlin chosen as U.S. flag-bearer for Opening Ceremonies

09 February 2018, 05:19 | Marlene Fleming

Luger Erin Hamlin Chosen As US Flag Bearer for Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony

Team USA's Olympic flag bearer will be former bronze medal winner

And Davis was definitely not happy about it, venting in a tweet that the coin toss was "dishonorably" done.

SYRACUSE (WRVO) - Remsen native Erin Hamlin will carry the American flag during the opening ceremonies Friday at the Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea.

He became the first black athlete to ever win a gold medal in an individual event at the Winter Olympics 12 years ago in Turin, Italy.

Erin Hamlin has been given the honor of being flag bearer for Team USA.

"I think they're going to be really glad that they made that decision", Hamlin said.

Fellow nominee Shani Davis panned the process in a tweet, calling it "dishonorable" and suggesting race ultimately played a role in the selection. The vote ended tied at 4-4, which resulted in a coin flip.

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Representatives from the U.S. Olympic Committee, the U.S. Speedskating Team and the U.S. Luge team did not immediately respond to requests for comment from TIME.

Hamlin will be leading the largest ever US contingent - 244 total athletes - and largest contingent from any nation in Olympic history.

Hamlin won a bronze medal in Sochi, Russia. His two back-to-back wins came in 2006 and 2010.

Both Davis and Hamlin boast impressive Olympic resumes. "Their animosity toward each other was obvious at a news conference, when Hedrick brought up the team pursuit and Davis stormed out of the room".

Hamlin will don an exclusive "Team USA Opening Ceremony heated parka" designed by Polo Ralph Lauren, the statement said. The three athletes are some of the few black athletes competing for Team USA. In winning bronze at the Sochi Games, Hamlin broke a 34-year slump for American Luge, which saw the sport dominated by German and Austrian athletes.

The 35-year-old Davis is now a five-time Olympian who has won two gold medals and two silver medals.

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