Maryborough’s Sarah Sydney, a member of the British skeleton team, takes time out at the British Bobsleigh and Skeleton practice facility at Bath University. Two races this week could decide whether she will take part in the Olympics.
Maryborough’s Sarah Sydney, a member of the British skeleton team, takes time out at the British Bobsleigh and Skeleton practice facility at Bath University. Two races this week could decide whether she will take part in the Olympics.

Sarah Sydney on track for Olympics

MARYBOROUGH’S Sarah Sydney is about to make her all-or-nothing final push for selection in the British skeleton team for next month’s Winter Olympics.

The 25-year-old former Aldridge State High School student has only two races left in her final bid to impress selectors before the three-strong women’s team for Vancouver is named next week.

Sydney, who produced some start times that were among the fastest in the world last season, will get her chance to shine during the Intercontinental Cup in Calgary, Canada over the next two days.

The track is the one used in the comedy movie Cool Runnings which was based on the Jamaican bobsled team on their debut in the 1988 Winter Olympic Games.

She knows that she’s got to be at her best to make the final line-up when she hits the track at speeds of around 126kmh for the first race today and the final one tomorrow.

Sydney is currently ranked fourth in the British squad and 36th in the world and a good performance this weekend would push her up the rankings and into the reckoning.

Jenny Sydney said her daughter, who holds a British passport, was ready to give it her all.

“Sarah is well aware of what she’s got to do and she’s focused on it – you could say that they are the biggest races of her life,” she said.

“She knows that all she can do now is go out and give it her best and hope that’s good enough to make the team.

“It’s basically a case of what happens happens now.”

Sarah, who set the Australian under 16 and under 18 national triple jump records at the Australian All-Schools Championships in Sydney (her records still stand) in 1999, was in England studying at the University of Bath a couple of years ago when she saw a poster that said ‘Are you fit, fast and fearless? Come and try out for the British skeleton team’.

She tried out and the rest is history and now nearing historic.

If Sarah does make the team, will Jenny and other family members swap the heat of the Fraser Coast for the cold of Canada?

“I reckon you could say that we certainly will,” she said.

“Anyway, I prefer the cold to the heat any day,” she laughed.



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