100 days to Beijing 2022 and British Bobsleigh & Skeleton athletes experience winning silver medal on Olympic track during test event
University of Bath-based British Bobsleigh & Skeleton Association athletes Marcus Wyatt, Brad Hall and Greg Cackett enjoyed dream starts to the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games season as they won silver at the test event in China today.
Skeleton racer Wyatt secured second spot behind Germany’s Alexander Gassner on his very first taste of the Olympic track, clocking a combined time of 2:03.65mins in a strong field that featured all of the major contenders for the Olympic title in less than four months’ time.
Hours later, Hall and Cackett clocked 2:00.87 in the two-man bobsleigh to finish just seven hundredths of a second behind Francesco Friedrich, Germany’s reigning double Olympic Champion and 11-time World Champion, as they put down a significant marker ahead of February’s global showpiece.
“It’s a great start to the season and a near perfect end to the three weeks here in Beijing,” said Wyatt, who won his maiden World Cup medal in Sigulda just under a year ago.
“I’m sure there will be points of the season that aren’t going so well so to have this in my locker and to know that I’ve performed on the track where it really matters is massive for my confidence. It’s great to have it in my back pocket for the rest of the year.
“I’d been building throughout the training after a tough first few days – I managed to find my rhythm and I’ve been on an upwards trajectory since then. The final day of training was pretty good and I feel like I’ve got a good feel for the flow of the track now.
“Consistency at this track is really difficult and that was part of the reason I did so well – I put two consistent runs together when it counted. I feel like I’ve started to click with the track but the important part will be when we come back here in 100 days’ time.”
Fellow Brits Craig Thompson and Matt Weston finished 17th and 19th, while the women’s race saw Olympic bronze medalist Laura Deas place 16th, one spot behind team-mate Brogan Crowley.
The teams head back to their Team Bath Sports Training Village training base later this week at the end of a three-week training period at the Olympic venue.
The World Cup season kicks off in Igls, Austria on November 19, with eight races on the top circuit prior to February’s return to China for the global showpiece.