A 25-year-old Florida woman is set to make history at the Olympics just 4 months after she began training for the sport that’s now become her golden ticket the winter games.
Erin Jackson says she was just as surprised as the rest of the world when her final scores during the U.S. Olympic Long-Track Speed Skating Trials landed her a spot on the team.
“I really wasn’t expecting any of this, just coming in as a newbie, just trying to do the best I can,” she said, according to NBC Sports. “I still don’t even know.”
Jackson’s noteworthy accomplishment makes her the third Olympic athlete to make the U.S. Speed Skating team and the first Black woman ever to make the Long-Track Speed Skating team. Although she only began taking up long-track speed skating in September 2017, the former University of Florida student has a background as an in-line skater and roller derby athlete.
Jackson placed third in the 500-meter race to land her coveted spot on the national team and her news comes just week after 17-year-old Maame Biney made history as the first Black woman to qualify for any Olympic speed skating team.
The Winter Olympics are set to kick off in Pyeongchang County, South Korea on February 9, 2018.