From Carl Lewis to Simone Biles, Houston athletes are no strangers to the Olympic Games.
That said, as many locals know, Houston weather is not often conducive to producing athletes to compete in the Winter Olympics, but Jonathan Garcia is attempting to change this reality:
Garcia, 31, reportedly started out as an inline skater as a youngster in Katy.
In 2006, the U.S. Olympic Committee recruited Garcia and other inline skaters to switch to ice skating events:
“I came in at the perfect time, which was a blessing but also really tough. It’s been the hardest time to make the team, and the competition has been insane,” Garcia said in an interview with the Houston Chronicle. “I’ve been fortunate to be around some of the best ever to do it, like (gold medalists) Chad Hedrick and Shani Davis.”
After some tough luck and some rules changes that kept him off the Olympic team in 2014, Garcia is said to be finally getting the chance to compete on the biggest stage in his sport.
He will be racing in the 500 meter sprint on Monday.
As part of his own efforts to win a major championship, Garcia is reportedly using the Astros’ journey to the World Series as a source of inspiration.
He hung an Astros flag over his bed at the Olympic Village, and watched the thrilling Game 5 of the 2017 World Series, which the Astros won 13-12 in 10 innings.
On a recent Instagram post, he mentioned he is “channeling my inner @josealtuve27 before training today.”
Garcia said he hopes to channel the energy of Altuve, Correa, Springer and the rest of the Astros in bringing another championship to Houston.
“I’ve been an Astros fan longer than I’ve been skating,” he said in an interview. “Hopefully I can fulfill one of my dreams of throwing out the first pitch. I’ve been practicing.”