Lelliott hoping for varied career

Thu, 19 Jan 17:53:00 2012

James Lelliott is hoping his Winter Youth Olympic Games debut can be the first steps towards a glittering and varied international sporting career.

Bobsleigh - 0

Having represented Britain at the European Youth Olympic Festival in Finland in 2009, the 18-year-old is no stranger to pulling on a national tracksuit.

However, while he took to the track in the long jump in Tampere on that occasion, it will be a course of a completely different variety, and temperature, in Austria.

Having been scouted following a British Bobsleigh talent ID day Lelliott has spent the last 18 months leading a double life as a brakeman cum long jumper.

His bobsleigh experiment will reach its head on January 22 at the Youth Olympics in Igls but despite taking a break afterwards, Lelliott insists it won't be goodbye for good.

With the World Athletics Championships in Moscow in 2013 his next major goal, he will concentrate on sand, not ice, for now.

But Lelliott is planning on making Russia his go-to destination of the next few years by launching a Winter Olympic qualification tile for Sochi in 2014.

"I am really looking forward to being out in Austria and experiencing a Youth Olympic Games," said Lelliott.

"The bobsleigh still scares me to death every time but I love doing it and while I want to have a break for a couple of years after next week I want to come back to it.

"The goal for me is to get back into the long-jump full-time then and try to get to the World Championships in 2013.

"Then after that I'd love to try and get into the Winter Olympic squad for Sochi in Russia in 2014. That is the plan."

Lelliott will compete in Austria as part of a 24-strong British team set to go head-to-head with over 1,000 athletes from all over the world.

The 18-year-old will link up with pilot Olly Biddulph in Igls and, despite the pair's relative inexperience in the bobsleigh, Lelliott is in confident mood.

"It would be quite nice to win a medal and we think we can, we are confident," he added. "We think there are probably about five other people that have a chance and we don't know what will happen but we are capable of winning a medal.

"The experience of being out there with so many athletes from other countries as well and seeing all the other sports is going to be great."

Sportsbeat / Eurosport

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