Fearon eyeing British bobsleigh history after World Cup breakthrough
Bobsleigh

Fearon eyeing British bobsleigh history after World Cup breakthrough

24 November 2017 / 17:43

PyeongChang 2018 will mark the 20th anniversary of Team GB’s last bobsleigh medal at an Olympic Winter Games.

But after last weekend’s World Cup in Utah that saw Britain win a first medal in four years and a second GB crew also slide into the top six, Joel Fearon has not ruled out the possibility of Team GB winning two medals in South Korea.

Fearon was part of Brad Hall’s crew that led after the first run on the Park City track last Saturday and although they had slipped down to third by the time they crossed the finish line, he is adamant more is to come.

Team GB have won just four bobsleigh medals in Olympic history, but with Lamin Deen also placing sixth in the second race of the weekend – a second top ten of the weekend for him – they look better placed than ever to launch a two-pronged attack on the podium come PyeongChang.

“It would be mental,” said Fearon of the prospect of two British four-man medals in Korea.

“It would be such a great thing and it’s so very possible. When we go to Korea we’ll be on fair ground.

“Nobody’s been there that much and our drivers are very, very used to going to a track and dealing with it as quickly as possible, with very little time on it.

“We’re going to be on very even ground and I’m excited about that.

“It would be something else. But it is possible – as last weekend showed. We’ve got a lot of potential.”

The World Cup season began in Lake Placid, a fortnight ago, with Bruce Tasker piloting himself and Fearon to 25th in the two-man competition.

Brad Hall was disqualified, before the second race of the weekend Hall and Toby Olubi cracked the top 20, with Tasker and Fearon back in 26th.

The World Cup then moved on to Salt Lake City, Utah, the site of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games.

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And with action switching from two-man to four-man, it was the first opportunity to see the wider British squad in action.

Friday did not go to plan for Hall, finishing 22nd and missing out on a second run, while Deen guided his crew to eighth.

But everything clicked into place on Saturday with Hall and his crew stepping into the podium and Deen jumping up a couple of places into the top six.

It’s this strength in depth that Fearon hopes will prove beneficial come PyeongChang.

“Afterwards, Brad wasn’t happy with some things, Lamin wasn’t happy with some things, some of the breakmen weren’t happy with some things, and we still got such a good result – there’s a lot more to come from us and it’s very exciting looking ahead to the Olympics,” added the former sprinter.

“I’ve been in the bobsleigh system for such a long time and it’s probably the first time I’ve seen the whole team – men, women, everyone – just work together in such a way.

“That result is not going to be a one off. When we get back to Europe our drivers will have more experience there.

“And we’re still trying to sort out teams, in terms of who will be pushing who, which driver will be driving which sled, so we are still changing little things around to make sure we’ve got the best people where we need them.

“When you see us out there in PyeongChang, it will be the best people in the best places and I’m so confident that we’re going to do our country proud.”

The World Cup bandwagon rolls into Whistler, Canada, this weekend for the final leg of the North American swing.

Fearon will take to the track on Friday night for the two-man event pushing Hall, while Tasker teams up with Nicholas Gleeson.

Saturday will then see the same foursomes take to the ice that enjoyed such success last weekend, and with a full programme of action planned, Fearon is excited by what is to come.

“We’ve recovered really well,” concluded the 29-year-old. “It was good in the moment but we’re very aware that we’ve got a lot of work left to do.

“But it was still nice to see some of the hard work that we’ve put in, come back out how we wanted it to.

“Everything is looking good for Whistler, we’ve had a couple of good sliding days and we’ve been doing a lot of work on trying to get the two-man events a bit more involved, too.

“It’s not going to be easy but we’re working hard on that.”

Sportsbeat 2017

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