DALLAS, March 4, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- As the Sochi games come to a close, many young athletes are looking ahead to 2018. For aspiring youngsters, the sport of skeleton is rapidly catching on with dreams of winning gold in 2034.

Skeleton, which can be traced back to 1882, is a high-octane sledding sport that begins with a running leap onto a sled that appears no bigger than a cafeteria tray. So close you can smell the ice, athletes plunge headfirst—barely inches off the ice—down a winding, mile-long track, sliders achieve outrageous speeds—often surpassing 80 mph.

It is an extreme sport that requires incredible nerve and intense focus. Although skeleton uses the same track as the bobsled and luge, skeleton sleds are maneuvered by the riders' shoulders and knees.

After only two previous Olympic appearances in 1928 and 1948, as "Cresta" during the Winter Olympic Games in St. Moritz, Switzerland, skeleton was reinstated as a Winter Olympic sport in 2002 by Robie Vaughn, co-founder and co-owner of Vaughn Capital Partners, LLC in Dallas, Texas. Vaughn's book "Headfirst: The Olympic Success Story of Skeleton" (Brown Books Publishing Group) is a spirited tale of risk, leadership, and determination.

Calling it "the ride of his life," Vaughn reveals what it takes to create, build, and man an organization spearheading the campaign and overcoming obstacles to reinstate skeleton in the 2002 Winter Olympic in Salt Lake City, Utah. He invites readers to an eye-opening look inside his story of obsession: from the sheer thrill of sliding down the tracks on skeleton sleds, which he first tried at the age of thirty-nine, to his idea of representing the United States as a member of the Olympic skeleton team.

"'Headfirst' is not just a book about an exciting sport and Olympic medals," says Tristan Gale, First Women's Olympic Skeleton Gold Medalist, 2002. "But about the lives and the journey of the people who made it happen." Jim Shea, World Champion, 1999 and Olympic Skeleton Gold Medalist, 2002 adds, "Robie Vaughn along with his wife Fallon, threw their energy, love, and support into the daredevil sport of skeleton and made our Olympic dreams a reality."

Join Vaughn as he navigates the obstacles to reinstate and build the sport in the United States––obstacles that proved more difficult than the mind-numbing curves of the track. Be inspired by the dedicated athletes––of an individual sport––who believed in teamwork.

As the late George M. Steinbrenner, III said, "This is a remarkable story about a sport that hadn't been in the Olympics for decades. It is a story that became simultaneously a personal awakening for Vaughn––becoming a "WARRIOR" of legendary proportions."

To order copies, please visit: www.HeadfirstSkeleton.com;
Or call Brown Books Publishing Group at 972-381-0009.

About the Author

Robie Vaughn has not only competed as a skeleton athlete on the United States National and World Cup teams but has shared his leadership and strategic management abilities with the United States Bobsled and Skeleton Federation (USBSF) and the 2002 Olympic Skeleton Team as Team Leader with the United States Olympic Committee.

Vaughn is a co-founder and co-owner of Vaughn Capital Partners, LLC, a privately-held investment partnership. He also holds board and executive positions with Dorchester Minerals, Empire Partners, and Vaughn Petroleum—companies focused on oil and gas interests and other investment opportunities.
Vaughn earned his bachelor of Business Administration from The University of Texas at Austin. He has been a life-long supporter of UT educational excellence, as well as capital improvements related to sports and scientific exploration. He also provides leadership and philanthropic support to the Culver Educational Foundation, Culver Academies, Culver, Indiana. An avid all-around sportsman, Vaughn has climbed Mount Everest and led an Olympic Gold medal-winning US skeleton team.

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A photo accompanying this release is available at:


Cindy Birne
Director of Public Relations
Brown Books Publishing Group