Former Cal Track Runner Chuck Berkeley Earns Olympic Spot in Bobsled
Jan. 17, 2010
BERKELEY - Chuck Berkeley, a 400-meter runner for the Golden Bears track & field team while a student at California, was named to the U.S. Olympic team in the four-man bobsled Sunday, where he will push for driver John Napier.
The four-man bobsled even will take place at the Whistler Sliding Centre Feb. 26-27 during the Vancouver Games next month. The United States qualified three bobsleds for the Olympics, and Napier and his push team of Berkeley, Chris Fogt and Steve Langton will make up the foursome for USA II.
In November, Napier and Berkeley teamed to win a World Cup two-man bobsled competition at Lake Placid, N.Y.
Berkeley, who lists his home as Walnut Creek, Calif., finished fourth in the 400 meters at the Pac-10 track championships in 2000, finishing in a time of 46.95, Cal's fastest mark of the season and a career collegiate best.
Berkeley took up bobsledding in 2007. He first gained interest in the sport while a student at Cal, where he watched Darrin Steele train with Cal associate head coach Ed Miller for the 1998 Olympics. Berkeley joined the World Cup team in his first season and placed 16th at the World Championships with Napier. He was third at the 2009 U.S. Bobsled Push Championships. Outside of bobsledding, Berkeley works as a real estate broker.
Originally from Pittsfield, Mass., Berkeley transferred to Cal from Diablo Valley College in 1998 and competed for the Bears during the 1999 and 2000 track & field seasons. He anchored Cal's 4x400 relay that clocked a time of 3:09.81 at the Mt. SAC Relays in '00.
Berkeley joins a short list of former Cal students who are known to have competed in the Winter Olympics. Nion Tucker captured a gold medal for the United States in the five-man bobsled in 1928, while Timothy Brown was fifth in figure skating in 1960 and Connie Carpenter-Phinney was seventh in the 1500 meters in speed skating in 1972.