Bode Miller and 10 Other Sports Speedsters We'd Love to See in Motorsports
There have been many notable athletes who crossed over from one sport to another. Deion Sanders and Bo Jackson were both great football players who parlayed that success over to the baseball diamond as well.
Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player to have ever lived, and that wasn't enough for him. He also tried his hand at professional baseball.
But what about motorsports? Wouldn't it be great to have a couple of cross over athletes come into the world of motorsports?
I am going to look at 10 athletes who have mastered their craft in the sport in which they have made a career, and see if they would have the speed to measure up to the stars of the motorsports world.
1. Bode Miller
Considered the greatest skier in American history, Bode Miller would fit right in in the world of motorsports. He has a knack for going fast, and has the medals to prove it.
Miller has a total of five Olympic medals, including a gold and three silvers. In terms of the World Championships, Miller has five total medals, of which four of them are golds. He has medalled in four different events at the Olympics, which is a feat accomplished by only five people in history.
Miller would also fit in nicely to the world of motorsports with his sometimes off color attitude. He has been widely criticized for his poor attitude, as he as admitted to not caring about the Olympics or his performance during the games.
The bottom line is, Miller knows how to go fast, and for the most part he is a winner. Put him in a race car and big things would happen.
2. Usain Bolt
Usain Bolt is the fastest man in the world, and if you put him in the world of motorsports, he might not even need a car. There is a good possibility that Bolt could win without the use of an engine.
Bolt has entered three events in the Olympics, and taken gold in all three of them. He also set the world record in all three events, the 100 metre, 200 metre and 4 X 100 metres relay with his teammates.
At the 2009 World Championships in Berlin, Bolt took gold medals in all three events one more time. There is no doubt that Bolt knows how to go fast, and give that man a little more horsepower than he already has and he would be unstoppable.
3. Michael Phelps
Michael Phelps is another athlete who has absolutely dominated his sport. His list of credentials is longer than the front stretch at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
During the 2008 Olympic games, Phelps won eight gold medals in eight events. He set the record for most gold medals during a round of games, and in the process set seven new world records.
Overall, Phelps has won 16 Olympic medals, with 14 of them being golds. He currently holds seven world records, and has been named world swimmer of the year on six different occasions.
Phelps would fit into the world of motorsports just perfectly, however he may find that he has more success running races in the rain.
4. Deion Sanders
Deion Sanders excelled as both a football and baseball player, so why not add motorsports to his list of credentials. Sanders is a natural athlete who played multiple positions in the NFL, and was widely regarded as the fastest man in the league for many of his early years in the league.
Not only was Sanders a great athlete, but his personality was one of a kind, and his flamboyance and style were like nothing that the league had seen prior to his arrival.
Sanders would not only add talent to the world of motorsports, but his pre and post race interviews would surely make for can't miss television.
5. Michael Vick
There has never been a more athletic player to play quarterback in the NFL than Michael Vick. While a lot of people still haven't forgiven him for his off the field legal troubles, there is no denying the talent that he has on the field.
His career had a resurgence in 2010, as he became the Eagles starting quarterback after Kevin Kolb suffered an injury in Week 1.
Vick made a case for MVP in his comeback season, but ultimately lost out to Tom Brady. Vick not only saw his passing statistics improve but continued to be feared as one of the greatest running quarterbacks in history.
Just imagine seeing some of Vick's patented escapes from trouble out on the race track. How great would it be to see him implement a spin move at 180 miles per hour?
6. Chad Ochocinco
This one almost seems like it's inevitable. Chad Ochocinco has tried his hand at just about everything else there is to try, so why not motorsports.
During the 2010 NFL offseason, Ochocinco participated in Dancing With The Stars. Then he participated in the Cincinnati Bengals regular season, albeit not very well.
Other athletic endeavors that Ochocinco has embarked on have included racing against a horse for charity, trying out for a professional soccer team, and attempt to ride a bull.
It seems that there no athletic feat that the star wide receiver can't accomplish, or at least attempt. A tryout in the high octane world of motorsports seems like it is only a matter of time. And at the very least, his personality would certainly add to the entertainment.
Since coming to America and joining the Seattle Mariners in 2001, Ichiro has been nothing but a superstar. He has been a durable and reliable outfielder, and is a 10 time MLB All-Star, having made it each year of his career.
Seven times Ichiro has led the league in hits, he is a two-time batting champion, and has led the league in stolen bases one time as well.
He is the prototypical major league leadoff hitter. He hits for a high average, gets on base a lot, and steals a lot of bases. In his career, Ichiro has stolen 394 bases.
8. Chris Paul
Chris Paul is arguably the NBA's best point guard, and a great person off the court as well. Paul is four-time All-Star, and a one-time All-NBA first teamer. Paul was also a member of the 2008 U.S. Olympic gold medal team.
Paul has averaged 18.7 points per game for his NBA career. He has averaged 9.9 assists per game and 2.4 steals per game for his career, and has led the league in assists twice, and in steals on three different occasions.
Paul holds the NBA record for consecutive games with a steal at 108, and he is the only player in the history of the sport to lead the league in both assists and steals in consecutive seasons.
This man is amazing on the basketball court, he's a terrific bowler, and if you put him in the world of motorsports, there is no doubt he could succeed there as well.
9. Rafael Nadal
The world's number one ranked mens tennis player and King of the clay courts of the French Open, Rafael Nadal has dominated the world of tennis, and could probably do the same in the world of motorsports.
At the young age of just 24, Nadal has already completed the career Grand Slam. He has won a total of nine Grand Slam singles titles, and Olympic gold medal, and been a member of the Spanish Davis Cup team that has won three championships.
Nadal is the youngest player in tennis history to win the career Grand Slam, and only the seventh overall, but just the second male to do so.
He has dominated his sport for years already, and by tennis standards, he is already middle aged. Give it a few more years, and most likely a few more Grand Slams, and then Nadal can hang up his racquets and slip on a firesuit and a racing helmet.
10. Manny Pacquiao
Manny Pacquiao is the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world today. His list of accomplishments is enormous. He was named the fighter of the decade for the 2000s.
He is a 10-time world champion and he has won championships in eight different weight classes. He has amassed a career record of 53-3-2, with 38 wins coming via knockout.
Pacquiao is feared in the ring, and would be equally feared on the track. Imagine Pacquiao beating and banging other race cars on some of the small bullrings that NASCAR races on, instead of beating and banging on opponents in the boxing ring.