Tracy and Lanny Barnes; twins, Olympians

 What would you sacrifice for a loved one? It was a question American biathlete Tracy Barnes asked herself at the U.S. Olympic Trials last month. Her answer led to a selfless act that showed the ultimate bond between twin sisters. The Olympic Zone has their story.

“Before she got here I kind of felt like maybe my right arm was gone or something like that. You know I just didn’t feel whole or whatever,” Lanny Barnes said.

The twins caught the world’s attention about a month ago. Both are biathletes who have competed at past Olympics, but during the trials for the Sochi games only Tracy made the US team grabbing the fifth and final spot over her sister who had come down with the flu.

“I told her that you know I wanted her to go, I felt that she deserved to go and it meant a lot to me for her-to see her go,” Tracy said.

Lanny initially declined but Tracy didn’t give up eventually convincing Lanny during one of the many long walks they like to take with each other.

“Knowing Tracy really well I know that this is what she really wanted and so I said ok, I’m going to do my best to race for you and do my best for you,” Lanny said.

Even in a crowd of cheering fans there is no missing Tracy Barnes. At the starting line she catches her sister’s eye and the race is on. For both sisters, through the stands, up the stairs and along the course.

Lanny jumps fences, and hugs her sister. When it’s over Lanny is nowhere near the podium but it doesn’t matter. After the race there is really only one thing this twin sister wants to do.

Lanny didn’t think she’d see Tracy until after she competed in Sochi but through the generosity of their sponsors and others she was able to make the trip to root on her sister in person.

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