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No Medal For NFL’s Herschel Walker in Olympic Bobsledding Debut

February 17, 1992 GMT

LA PLAGNE, France (AP) _ Pro football player Herschel Walker had been expected to provide the explosive push that would propel the Americans to their first bobsled medal in 36 years. But the U.S. team finished seventh.

″There’s no doubt I was expecting more,″ the Minnesota Vikings running back said after his Olympic debut in the two-man bobsledding. ″We came in with the attitude that we had a chance to win, and we did have a chance to win.″

Walker and driver Brian Shimer were in ninth place at the start of Sunday’s race and were able to make up only two spots. They finished .69 seconds behind the gold medal duo of Gustav Weder and Donat Acklin of Switzerland.

U.S. team leader James Hickey admitted the coaches might have expected too much from Walker in only his second international competition.

But he immediately established high expectations for the four-man competition, in which Walker will serve as brakeman next weekend.

″We kind of thought he would be the hero we were looking for,″ Hickey said. ″The U.S. hasn’t won a medal since 1956, and I think we still have one coming in the four-man.″

The sprinter and Heisman Trophy winner agreed.

″There’s no doubt I think I can win,″ Walker said. ″If I didn’t, I’d be going home.″

Sunday’s silver went to Rudolf Lochner and Markus Zimmerman of Germany, who finished .29 seconds behind Weder. Christoph Langen and Gunther Eger of Germany took the bronze .37 seconds behind the gold.