Headfirst towards Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics
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You may recognise some of my story from a few years back when I ran my first campaign; welcome back if that’s you! For newcomers; it’s nice to meet you. I’m Kimberley; a 28 year old skeleton athlete pursuing my dream of competing at the Olympic Games. Skeleton is a winter sport where you sled headfirst down an icy track (think of a waterslide filled with ice) at high speeds of up to 140 kph (90 mph). Great Britain have won the past two Olympic golds in the women’s skeleton; both winners were originally athletes from other sports, just like me. I want to follow in their footsteps.
I only started training for skeleton two years ago having been an international level long jumper beforehand. I was selected onto the GB talent programme for skeleton in 2015 and haven’t looked back since; no more sandpits! I also gave up my career as an exercise physiologist in high performance sport; it was all a big risk. Fortunately that risk has paid off and I have just finished my first full competitive season racing in the Europa Cup for Great Britain.
I ended the season placed 5th overall in the Europa Cup standings (consisting of eight races). Highlights of the season included a 3rd place in Altenberg, Germany; a notoriously difficult track, after just 5 training runs. I also achieved fourth places in Altenberg and St. Moritz in January. It was a very special experience being on the podium and seeing the Union Jack be raised in my name and something I’d like to see a lot more of going forwards in my career.
I have now reached the point in my career where I need to invest in equipment to further assist my development as a skeleton athlete. The time has come to invest in a helmet; I currently loan a helmet and it would be preferable to own my own (cost of £300-400). Up until this point I have been using runners that belong to the British Skeleton programme; and they need them back for new athletes just like I was two years ago. This means I need to buy runners in order to continue to train and compete; costing approximately £500 a pair. Your runners are a crucial piece of equipment and play a big part in your performance as they are the link between the ice and the sled. I am aiming to purchase two pairs of runners so that I can have appropriate equipment for both warm and cold ice (yes there is such a thing!).
Alongside being a full-time athlete, which includes spending the majority of winter abroad for training (no skeleton track in the UK) I work as a personal trainer and coach and an academic tutor. I was lucky enough to have a huge amount of support for my original campaign which allowed me to commit to skeleton two years ago and I am asking for support again to keep my journey on track. Without that support I would not have had the success I have had so far; thank you.
I am more committed than ever to skeleton and with every race I will get closer to that Olympic Games in 2022. I am prepared to make the choices necessary to ensure I fulfil my potential. If you’d like to be a a part of this journey please share this page and my story or donate to this campaign if you’re able. Thank you for spending some time reading about what I am working every day towards. If you’d like to know more or keep up to date with how I am doing please check out my social media pages or website.
5th place overall Europa Cup 2016-17
In my first season racing for Great Britain I finished 5th overall in the Europa Cup series which consisted of eight races.
Double podium in Altenberg
I finished 3rd and 4th in races 7+8 of the Europa Cup in Altenberg, Germany; a new track. My first time seeing the Union Jack raised in my name.
Fourth in St. Moritz, birthplace of skeleton
I placed fourth in EC 6, held in St. Moritz. A historical place for skeleton; it is the only natural track in the world.