The Globe and Mail - August 16th
His black race day T-shirt reads “Chuck Norris has two speeds: WALK and KILL” and features the action hero brandishing a gun; it seems an accurate, if hyperbolic, mission statement for short-track speed-skater Olivier Jean.
The native of Lachenaie, Que., a suburb northeast of Montreal, is an easy-going, oddball presence away from the rink, but as he says, “when I'm on the ice, I'm there to kill.” And that's what he's done, in a metaphorical sense, to rivals who are vying for a place on Canada's Olympic short-track team.
When Jean was wandering the streets of downtown Vancouver last week in search of new accoutrements for the national short-track speed-skating trials, he popped into a comic-book shop to inquire “who's your fastest superhero?” He emerged with a red The Flash T-shirt that could make its competitive debut in today's finals.
“He's fast, and he's kicking ass just like me … it was my goal four months ago, it was my goal a year ago to skate all three distances at the Olympic Games,” said Jean, whose regular rotation of competition undergarments includes Sylvester Stallone's muscle-bound rogue soldier John Rambo (“that's the one for big occasions”), Norris, Rastafarian icon Haile Selassie and martial arts legend Bruce Lee.
“Maybe I'll wear Bruce Lee [today],” he said.