The British Olympic Association (BOA) today announced that four skeleton athletes have been officially selected for Team GB for the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games.
Selected athletes are (athlete profiles can be found on http://www.teamgb.com/sochi-2014-team-gb-athletes):
· Kristan Bromley (born: Waterfoot, Rossendale, lives: Sheffield)
· Dominic Parsons (born: London, lives: Bath)
· Shelley Rudman (born: Wiltshire, Lives: Sheffield)
· Lizzy Yarnold (born: Sevenoaks, lives: Bath)
Commented Sochi 2014 Team GB Chef de Mission Mike Hay:
"Going into these Olympic Winter Games with a current world champion in Shelley, and Lizzy having had a straight run of seven podiums, four of them gold medals on the skeleton world cup circuit, will surely make for some exciting competition in Sochi. Add that to that the fact that a skeleton athlete has medalled at the last three Games and I think we will have all eyes on the track come 13th, 14th and 15th of Feb when our women and men compete."
Lizzy Yarnold: “This really is a dream come true – my whole life I have dreamt about becoming a British Olympian and for the last five years since I took up skeleton, competing at Sochi 2014 has been my primary focus. This season has been great for my preparation, I am in a good place both physically and mentally - and I can’t wait to get back on the Sochi track, go over the lines and maintain my focus. I don’t take part in races to come second, so I will approach the Olympic Winter Games as I do every race and give it everything I’ve got!”
Shelley Rudman: “I am delighted to be selected for Team GB for my third Winter Olympics and take great pride in that achievement alone; when I started out in skeleton I would never have thought that was possible! My first Games in Turin in 2006 where I won the silver medal was a hugely positive experience for me, Vancouver in 2010 was disappointing after I just missed out on a medal – so going into Sochi I hope I will be able to merge all my experiences from the last two Olympiads to give myself the best possible chance of success. I’d like to thank everyone who has supported me up to now and I hope I will make you all proud in these Olympic Winter Games, whatever the outcome may be.”
Dominic Parsons: “Sochi has been my goal for so long that I'm very relieved to have been selected, and excited about the opportunity to represent Team GB at the Winter Olympics. I have tried to take this season race by race, focussing on my development at each event to make sure that I can perform at my best at the Games. My performances during the season have shown that I have the ability to be up there in the medal zone, so my aim over the next few weeks is to make sure I have the best preparation so that I can produce my best performance when it counts.
Kristan Bromley: “I am incredibly proud to be selected for my fourth Olympic Winter Games; representing your country at the Olympics is the pinnacle of any sport and the stuff that dreams are made of. It makes it even more special that it is exactly 20 years to the month since the first time I tried skeleton - to have remained at the top of the sport for that time, gives me a wealth of experience to take to Sochi. Every Olympic campaign has been 4 years of hard work to get there and has pushed me to raise my game going into each season. This year has been no different. I have been working with a focus on Sochi, and signs are showing that my performance is on track. I’m excited about competing in Sochi and will give it my all.”
Said Nigel Laugthon, Team GB Skeleton Team Leader and Skeleton
Performance Director Nigel Laughton said:
“I am delighted that we have such a strong skeleton squad representing Team GB at the Olympic Winter Games. Collectively, our season has been excellent, with medals and Top 6 results at every World Cup, and hence the athletes will arrive in Sochi ready, prepared and confident ahead of this exhilarating competition. The team of athletes selected encompass a healthy balance of experience, previous Olympic success, youth and outstanding current form, and whilst for Lizzy and Dom this will be their first Olympics, for Shelley and Kristan, their 3rd and 4th respectively - incredible achievements in their own right.
“A similar balance exists amongst the coaching and support staff chosen to ensure we provide the optimal performance environment in which the athletes can thrive in the final weeks before Sochi. It is a great honour to lead this squad, ably supported by Head Ice Coach, Andi Schmid. Naturally, there is disappointment not to have qualified a full quota of 3 men and 3 women, however in gaining quota places for the team and their subsequent selections Lizzy, Shelley, Dom and Kristan can be exceptionally pleased with their own performances.
“I would like to take the opportunity to thank all our partners, sponsors and supporters, particularly UK Sport and the National Lottery who have been instrumental in getting us to the ‘Start Block’ in Sochi. The next month promises to be an incredible one and I have no doubt our skeleton sliders will make us all extraordinarily proud.”