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Olympic sprinters picked in U.S. bobsled team

Tianna Madison of the U.S. competes in her women's 4x100m relay heat during the London 2012 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium August 9, 2
Tianna Madison of the U.S. competes in her women's 4x100m relay heat during the London 2012 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium August 9, 2

NEW YORK (Reuters) - London Olympic gold medalist Tianna Madison and former hurdling world champion Lolo Jones have been selected in the United States bobsleigh team, raising the prospect the pair could compete at the 2014 Sochi Winter Games.

The two sprinters were among a group of six women selected on Thursday as push athletes in the American bobsled squad for the 2012-13 World Cup circuit.

Their selection is the first stepping stone in making the American Winter Olympics team but is no guarantee they will get to Sochi.

They were invited to try out for the team as part of a long-standing ploy by U.S. bobsleigh officials to try and recruit top sprinters, hoping to convert their explosive speed on the track to the ice.

Madison won a gold medal in London as the lead-off runner for the U.S. team that won the 4x100 meters final, breaking the world record set by East Germany 27 years ago.

Jones is a two-time world indoor hurdles champion. She was the favorite to win gold at the 2008 Beijing Olympics but tripped and fell on the penultimate hurdle.

(Reporting by Julian Linden; Editing by Justin Palmer)

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