The British Olympic Association has today announced the 27 athletes selected to represent Team GB at the Sarajevo 2019 European Youth Olympic Winter Festival (EYOF), which runs from the 9th-16th February 2019.
Team GB will have athletes competing in seven of the eight disciplines, with athletes participating in a mixture of alpine skiing, biathlon, cross-country skiing, curling, figure skating, short track speed skating and snowboarding.
The team consists of athletes aged between 15 and 18, with the EYOF playing a crucial role in the development of young athletes from across the United Kingdom and Europe.
The competition will provide athletes with their first multi-sport experience, with the aspiring Olympians following in the footsteps of Chemmy Alcott and Katie Summerhayes, who have both graduated youth events to represent Team GB at an Olympic Winter Games.
Sarajevo 2019 is the 14th edition of the EYOF and the first time it will be hosted in Bosnia & Herzegovina. Approximately 1,500 athletes from 50 European countries will take part, in what is Europe’s largest multi-sport event.
Lizzy Yarnold, Team GB’s most successful ever Winter Olympian, will take on the role of the Athlete Ambassador for the team’s pre-Games assembly.
The assembly will give athletes the chance to come together as one Team GB for the first time, receive their kit for the Festival and learn all about Sarajevo 2019, with Yarnold’s vast experience helping athletes with their preparations for the Games.
Lewis Coggins, Team GB’s Chef de Mission for Sarajevo 2019 said: “To have the opportunity to be Chef de Mission for Team GB in Sarajevo is a huge honour.
“The European Youth Olympic Festivals are fantastic opportunities for our young winter athletes to experience life in a multi-sport Games for the first time and test themselves against the best young athletes in Europe.
“To be involved in seven out of the eight sports on offer shows the continuing progression of winter sports in the UK and I hope this opportunity will help athletes to develop as well as act as a positive springboard for their future careers.”
Lizzy Yarnold, Team GB Athlete Ambassador said: “I am absolutely delighted to be Team GB’s Athlete Ambassador at the 2019 EYOWF Team Assembly day.
“I hope I can use my experience of competing for Team GB at the Winter Olympics to help the members of our team make the most out of their first Team GB experience.
“There has never been a more exciting time to be involved in British winter sport, so I hope the athletes can grasp this incredible opportunity to further themselves as sportspeople and as individuals.”
Olivia Weedon, short track speed skating, whose uncle is three-time Winter Olympian Jon Eley, said: “It feels spectacular to be selected. I’m usually within a small team of about eight, so I’m excited to have the opportunity to mingle with other sports and go to a major competition as part of Team GB.
“It’s going to be a massive honour to represent Team GB. My aunty and uncle have both been to the Winter Olympics before, so I’d love to be able to follow in their footsteps.”
Gabe Adams, snowboarding, said: “I really excited and happy with the opportunity to represent Team GB. It’s so surreal - I thought this type of competition was so far-fetched when I started snowboarding.
“It would be good to go to the Games and come back with a good result. It would be great to give something back to all my family and friends who have supported me along the way.”
Team GB at Sarajevo 2019:
Charles Rankin – aged 17 from Bonnyrigg, Midlothian
Daisi Daniels – aged 16 from Rochdale, Greater Manchester
Edouard Guigonnet – aged 17 from Les Menuires, France
Oliver Weeks - aged 17 from Leamington Spa, Warwickshire
Olivia Foster – aged 18 from Leatherhead, Surrey
Owen Vinter – aged 17 from Glasgow, Scotland
Sarah Woodward – aged 17 from North Warnborough, Hampshire
Victoria Palla – aged 18 from Moedling, Austria
Shawna Pendry – aged 16 from Font Romeu, France
Alexander Franks-Penty – aged 17 from Hvalsted, Norway
Beinn Horsfall – aged 17 from Quaix-en-Chartreuse, France
Angus Bryce – aged 16 from Kelso, Scotland
Hamish Gallacher – aged 16 from Sanquhar, Scotland
Inca Maguire – aged 15 from Forfar, Scotland
Robyn Munro – aged 15 from Stranraer, Scotland
Genevieve Somerville – aged 16 from Derby, Derbyshire
Joseph Zakipour – aged 16 from Nottingham, Nottinghamshire
Short Track Speed Skating:
Olivia Weedon – aged 16 from Twickenham, London
Ollie Rowe – aged 15 from Ashford, Middlesex
Sophie Robertson – aged 15 from Newark, Nottinghamshire
Theo Collins – aged 15 from Guildford, Surrey
Ethan Smith – aged 15 from Southampton, Hampshire
Gabe Adams – aged 15 from Bridgnorth, Shropshire
Lara Cabrera-Myram – aged 15 from Houston, Scotland
Leon Drynan – aged 16 from Lochwinnoch, Scotland
Lewis Moore – aged 15 from Glasgow, Scotland
Luca Lane-Hopkins – aged 16 from Swansea, Wales