Jimmy Shea's athletic career began as a bobsled pilot before he moved onto the sport of skeleton in 1995. Shea is the only American to have the distinction of being a third generation Olympian. His grandfather, Jack Shea, became the first American to win two Winter Olympic gold medals in 1932. Shea's father, Jim Shea Sr., compete in the Nordic Combined event in the 1964 Winter Olympic Games.
Shea captured the first-ever Olympic gold medal won by an American in the sport of skeleton at the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, Utah. Shea broke over 15 world records while competing, and submitted his retirement before 2006. Shea is now back one the ice, but instead of going head first he's decided to jump back into the driver's seat of a bobsled.
- 2011-2012 America's Cup in four-man
-11th in Park City #1 (11/11), DSQ in Park City #2 (11/11), 7th in Calgary #1 (11/11), 7th in Calgary #2 (11/11), 5th in Lake Placid #1 (12/11), 5th in Lake Placid #2 (12/11)