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Winter Olympics: Ex-NHL Player Randy Gregg’s Kids Compete for Canada in Speedskating

Canadian short-track speedskater Jessica Gregg competes earlier this week at the Sochi Winter Olympics in Russia. (Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

By Hayli Goode | BSU at the Games

Sarah Gregg figured she’d be competing at the Sochi Winter Olympics when she visited Russia last month.

Canadian long-track speedskater Jamie Gregg races in a 500-meter prelim at the Sochi Winter Olympics in Russia earlier this week. (Paul Gilham/Getty Images)
Instead, the Canadian speedskater from Edmonton, Alberta, is back in Sochi, Russia, supporting her two speed-skating siblings, sister Jessica Gregg and brother Jamie Gregg, and Jamie’s spouse, Danielle Wotherspoon-Gregg.

The three are all competing for Canada, with Jessica in short track and Jamie and Danielle in long track competition.

“It sucks. I wanted to come to Sochi as a competitor,” said Sarah, who missed the cut for for 2014 and never had a chance for the Vancouver Winter Olympics in 2010 because of a disc injury in her back. “But honestly, the next best thing is coming here to support my family.

“I mean, I can’t complain. I’m here and my family is racing.”

The three Canadian Olympians are the children and daughter-in-law of former NHL player Randy Gregg and former speedskater Kathy (Vogt) Gregg, who met as Canadian Olympians at the Lake Placid Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, N.Y.

The father of two Canadian speedskating Olympians and the father-in-law of another, Randy Gregg played for four NHL Stanley Cup titlists as a defenseman for the Edmonton Oilers. (Photo: Mike Powell/Getty Images)
While Randy went without an Olympic medal in captaining Canada’s team in 1980 at Lake Placid and on its 1988 team at the Calgary Winter Olympics in Alberta, he played for four Stanley Cup titlists with the NHL‘s Edmonton Oilers and was also on a winning Canada Cup team as a defenseman. Kathy competed at the Winter Olympics in 1976 in Innsbruck, Austria, and in 1980 at Lake Placid.

As for this generation of Gregg family Olympians:

  • Jessica, 25, is competing in her second Olympics with a spot on the 3,000-meter relay and was a member of the silver medal-winning 3,000 relay at the Vancouver Games.
  • Jamie, 28, finished 11th in the men’s 500 on Monday; and finished eighth in the men’s 500 in Vancouver four years ago.
  • Wotherspoon-Gregg, 33, is competing in her first Olympics and finished 33rd in the women’s 500 on Tuesday. Her older brother, Jeremy, is a four-time Olympian who won a silver medal in the 500 in long track at Nagano, Japan, and still holds a 500 world record set in 2002 at Salt Lake City, and another sister-in-law.

Danielle Wotherspoon-Gregg competes for Canada in long-track speedskating at the Sochi Winter Olympics. (Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
“Obviously, I would have loved to been here racing, too,” an envious Sarah said. “And I think I have a pretty good situation here supporting my family.”

Family pride comes from the effort itself, Kathy said.

“As a skater, I realized how close it is to making it and not making it,” she said. “Whether they made it or not, you’re proud of how hard they’ve worked and all the sacrifices they’ve made.”

All four of the Greggs’ children, including Ryan Gregg, took part in competition through the Edmonton Speedskating Club along with other sports.

“My parents never pressured us into anything. If we didn’t like it, we just didn’t do it,” Sarah said.

“I know what it takes. I’ve almost been there. And I’ve seen my brother and sister go through it, and I lived with them — (and) live with my sister. So, I know how to be an Olympian. And I think I have it. It’s just that I need to get healthy first.”

97.9 WGRD, Channel 95.7, 100.5 The River, Classic Hits 98.7 WFGR and 1410 AM The Touch are partnering with BSU at the Games to bring you full Winter Olympics coverage! Follow BSU at the Games on Twitter and Facebook.

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