Yarnold receives gold and now wants to inspire a generation

15 February 2014 / 16:59

Lizzy Yarnold wants to be an inspiration to the next generation of British sportswoman - and claims she can't wait to meet her hero Jess Ennis.

Yarnold received her skeleton gold medal from International Olympic Committee vice-president, and former British Olympic Association chairman, Sir Craig Reedie at a ceremony on Medals Plaza in Olympic Park.

And then revealed how she hopes to become a role model for others to follow her lead.

"What really inspired me was Denise Lewis," said Yarnold, a promising track and field athlete, who specialised in heptathlon, before her switch to skeleton just six years ago. 

"When she won gold in Sydney I was at that age that was the right moment to say, 'This is what can be done, you can choose this career path, you can get on that podium and win Olympic gold if you work hard enough'.

"Goldie Sayers was also a massive inspiration. I was a javelin thrower for many years and she came for our sports awards. I must have been about 15 at the time, and I saw her in her Olympic suit and it had the writing, and she was just awesome.

"It's about being a strong role model as an athlete, being athletic and being proud of who you are and not worrying about what the media image is of the perfect woman. It's about being you and being proud and confident with who you are.

"It was always my aim to come into schools and inspire them and tell them about my career in skeleton and how I found it so late, and you can do it whether it's arts or music or sports. You've just got to follow your dream and dedicate a lot of time."

© Sportsbeat 2014