Major coup for British Skeleton as Latvian legend Martins Dukurs joins University of Bath-based programme as Performance Coach
The 38-year-old Latvian announced his retirement from competition earlier this week following an incredible career that also saw him win six European Championship crowns, 11 World Cup title and 61 World Cup races.
“The opportunity to join such a great team came at the perfect time,” said Dukurs. “If I look simply at history of results no one has achieved what Great Britain has, even a big nation like Germany. They’ve achieved this without a track, too. That means that the system is a good one.
“There is some great potential with the athletes and I like everything that I’ve seen so far and how things are done. I can see the structure and all the planning, and I can see that it isn’t just guesswork.
“We have athletes here with good experience on the tour – athletes who were beating me and I was beating them. They have really good potential to get better and achieve big things. I see that they work hard and they have good plans and big targets, and I hope that I will be able to help them reach them.”
Natalie Dunman, Performance Director for British Skeleton, added: “It’s a huge boost to have Martins on board for the new Olympic cycle. He is widely regarded as the greatest slider the world has ever seen and the things he has achieved in the sport are nothing short of incredible.
“He was understandably in high demand, so we are absolutely delighted that he has chosen to buy into what we are trying to achieve and begin his coaching career with us. I know that his experience and expertise will rub off on our athletes and our staff, and we’ve already seen aspects of that in the time he’s spent with us so far in Bath.
“The start of a new Olympic cycle is always exciting but there is no doubt that bringing Martins into our team is adding to the buzz about what lies ahead this winter and on the road to Milan Cortina 2026.”
The international skeleton season begins in November, with the World Cup season kicking off in Whistler, Canada, before heading to Park City and Lake Placid in the United States prior to Christmas. Three more World Cup races follow in Germany in the New Year, with the season showpiece, the World Championships, scheduled for St Moritz in late January. The top-tier calendar concludes with two more races in Igls and Sigulda in February.
Until then the British Skeleton squad will be training hard at the University of Bath, doing strength and conditioning in the high-performance gym and sprint work on the indoor and outdoor athletics tracks, as well as using the UK’s only outdoor push-start track.
Picture credit: @rekords