This week we were given the assignment to watch a movie from a list of movies. I chose “Cool Runnings” to watch. The focus for the week was Persistence, the Jamaican team in Cool Runnings demonstrate the value of Persistence. Cool Runnings is the story about a Jamaican team that tried out for the winter Olympics in the sport of Bobsledding. As we all know there is no snow in Jamaica. This is the story of incredible determination and persistence against all the odds of having success. The movie is a version of the true story of what actually happened when Jamaicans tried out and entered the Olympics in the winter of 1988.
Derice Bannock is Determined
Derice Bannock a top 100m runner from Jamaica tried out for the 1988 summer Olympics. Because of an accident where one of the team members, Junior tripped and fell, he and another team member Yul fell into each other near the finish line and they all became ineligible to qualify for the Olympics that year.
Derice was headstrong and wanted to compete in the Olympics that year. He had an idea that he would put a bobsledding team together to compete in the Winter Olympics of 1988. This seems impossible, because how will they train with no bobsled or any snow? Derice recruited his friend Sanka Coffie, who was a champion push cart racer to build a mock up bobsled to practice with on the dry ground and hills of Jamaica. He also went to his father’s friend Irv Blitzer (played by John Candy) for his help. Irv was friends with Derice’s father Ben who had recruited sprinters for the bobsled team for the Olympics in 1968.
The Coach was in Trouble
Irv Blitzer was a two time Gold Medalist at the 1968 Winter Olympics. In the 1972 Winter Olympics Irv was disqualified for cheating and he moved to Jamaica in disgrace. He lives an impoverished life as a bookie. They eventually recruit two of his friends Junior and Yul from the track team; even though Yul is still upset over Junior’s mistake of tripping and falling in the 100m try out. It disqualified the three runners.
They created a makeshift bobsled out of wood and took to the hills to practice, many mishaps but they were determined and persitent. They were going to do this. Hurdles did not deter them. Adversity and disappointments did not deter them. They just kept practicing.
No one believes they will get to the Olympics
No one takes them seriously that they will really compete in the Olympics and they have a very hard time raising money. They tried many fundraising ideas, singing in the street, arm wrestling, kissing booths, nothing worked. Things change when Junior sells his car to give them a great start on what they need. Junior also had a lesson for his teammates that he learned from his father. Junior let them know that his father struggled for many years.They were not always in good financial shape. He became rich because he never gave up and was persitent. Junior’s father had a goal and he kept working toward it. It needed to be the same for the team. They needed to keep going and not give up and give it their all.
They arrive in Calgary for the Olympics
The Jamaican bobsled got to Calgary, Canada where they got their first real used bobsled.This is where the Winter Olympic Games were held in 1988. The team was doing their best but they were copying the the arrogant East German team who told them to go home. They continued to practice and continued to get better at their technique. The Jamaicans finally qualify for the finals but the Olympic Committee disqualifies them on a technicality. This was retribution for their coach Irving’s prior cheating scandal. Irving confronts his former coach from the 1972 Olympic Winter Games and apologies to the committee for the scandal he created in 1972 which embarrassed his country, the USA. He asks the committee to punish him for his transgression but not the Jamaican team. The Olympic committee reverses their decision and allows the Jamaican team to again compete. They are thrilled for the opportunity to continue moving forward toward their dream.
In the Olympic race it looked like the Jamaican team would medal until tragedy struck. Because the bobsled was old and it couldn’t handle the high speed, one of the blades come off, and it flipped on its side leaving them meters short of the finish line. They were determined to finish the race and they put the sled over their shoulders and walked over the finish line, to a rousing applause from the spectators and Junior’s father. They held their heads high.
The team came home to Jamaica to a hero’s welcome and vowed to return to the Winter Olympics 4 years later. Their persistence paid off.
The 4 tiny attributes of Persistence
Cool Running is an example of the 4 tiny attributes of persistence that are taught in the Master Key:
- Having a Definite Major Purpose
- Having a Positive Mental Attitude
- Having a Plan of Action
- Having a Master Mind Alliance
The Master Mind Alliance was their coach and the 4 team members.
To be successful in your endeavors, this film includes all the elements necessary for success. It is an example for us all to apply the principles and do the things that it takes to succeed. Must have a definite major purpose, a positive mental attitude where you won’t let any of the obstacles get in your way and move forward with your plan with persistence. You will probably need to revamp when necessary and figure out what needs to be refined to make the path clearer and more successful. Have a definite plan of action and work with others in a Master Mind Alliance to make it happen. There is more power with the Alliance than trying to do it all by yourself.