Top-ten finish on World Cup return for bobsleigh driver John Jackson

14 December 2015

John Jackson made a stylish return to World Cup action for the first time in nearly two years as he guided Great Britain to eighth spot in the four-man bobsleigh on Sunday.

Jackson, who trains at the University of Bath, last competed at the top level at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics (pictured) and missed the whole of last season with a long-standing Achilles injury.

He won silver on European Cup duty in Winterberg last week and wasted little time in reminding the world that he belongs with the very best as he and his crew of Brad Hall, Bruce Tasker and Ben Simons beat 16 other sleds in the final World Cup event of the calendar year in Konigssee.

Jackson and co were less than half a second off the medals in an event won by German driver Nico Walther, much to the delight of Great Britain Bobsleigh Performance Director Gary Anderson.

“It’s been a long road back for John and to finish in the top ten on his first World Cup race since Sochi is a huge plus,” he said.

“John and his crew – all of whom are also pilots on our Accelerated Driver Programme – produced two strong runs and they’ve set a platform for us to kick on in the New Year.

“Our start times for both our crews show we are one of the best in the world in that department and that is very important as we build towards the World Championships in Igls in February.”

Lamin Deen, who had finished sixth and eighth in the two previous World Cup races this term, led Great Britain’s other crew of John Baines, Joel Fearon and Andrew Matthews to 16th place.

The result sees Deen end 2015 in eighth place in the IBSF World Rankings ahead of next month’s races in North America.

Saturday’s two-man competition had seen Hall and Simons mark their return to the World Cup circuit with a 20th-place finish, while Tasker and Fearon tied for 22nd.

In the women’s event, Mica McNeil and Natalie DeRatt finished ninth on their first World Cup appearance of the season.

Konigssee also hosted the final Skeleton World Cup of 2015, where a tenth-placed finish for Laura Deas in the women’s race means she will end the year ranked number three in the ISBF World Rankings.

Donna Creighton came 15th on Friday, meaning she will go into January’s races in North America ranked 14th overall.

In the men’s skeleton race, all three British sliders made it into the top 20 for the first time this term as Dom Parsons finished 14th, David Swift 17th and Ed Smith 19th.

All three Brits were consistent in their times over the two legs, with Mechanical Engineering PhD student Parsons 14th on both occasions, Swift 16th and Smith 18th on both runs.

The results mean Parsons finishes the calendar year ninth in the IBSF World Rankings, while Smith and Swift occupy the 18th and 19th spots respectively ahead of January’s races in North America.

The British Bobsleigh & Skeleton Association is based at the University of Bath Sports Training Village, with athletes training on the unique outdoor push-track and in the world-class gym.

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