Steven Holcomb: Olympic gold medallist bobsledder found dead at 37

Steven Holcomb piloted Team USA's four-man bobsled to a historic gold at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver
Steven Holcomb (left) piloted Team USA's four-man bobsled to a historic gold at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver

Olympic gold medallist bobsledder Steven Holcomb has died, aged 37.

It is believed Holcomb, who was found in his room at the US Olympic Training Centre in Lake Placid, New York on Saturday, died in his sleep.

He competed in three Winter Olympics and piloted the US four-man bobsled team to gold at Vancouver 2010 - the country's first Olympic title in the event in 62 years.

At Sochi 2014 he won bronze in both the two-man and four-man bobsled.

"The entire Olympic family is shocked and saddened by the incredibly tragic loss today of Steven Holcomb," said US Olympic Committee chief executive Scott Blackmun.

"Steve was a tremendous athlete and even better person, and his perseverance and achievements were an inspiration to us all."

Holcomb had been competing since 1998 and won five world titles and was also a six-time World Cup champion.

His achievements came despite a serious eye disease that left him with streaked and blurred vision.

Holcomb learned to drive a bobsled by feel rather than sight but his condition meant he was considered legally blind and was almost forced him to retire a year before the Vancouver Games.

Non-surgical treatment strengthened the cornea, enabling him to compete, and he went on to win the first of his five world titles in Lake Placid in 2009.

Holcomb revealed in his autobiography how he had struggled to come to terms with his condition and attempted suicide in 2007.

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