Ex RACING ICE 1 – ARMY BOBSLEIGH ICE CAMP

The novice training weeks run late November and early December each year, giving young aspiring athletes the opportunity to try on their ice legs and experience the adrenaline pumping sport of bobsleigh prior to committing to the race season. This event is usually held in Igls, near Innsbruck, Austria and benefits from a world class panel of coaches who teach the technical aspect of sliding as well as team dynamics. It is not a sport for the faint hearted, as even in training runs new sliders are taught to crawl before walking; walking will still generate speeds of up to 100kph which feels remarkably like being re-born through the screaming jaws of the sound barrier itself! Although we aim to accommodate everyone it is advised that people have a fair level of physical fitness and most importantly arrive with a positive and robust attitude as the ice will take no prisoners. The 2018 season saw an unprecedented amount of novices, with natural athletic talent and good team cohesion, selected to race for the Army.

What does the novice week entail? This is effectively a zero to hero training camp in a beautiful location, with accommodation at the Walzl hotel, Lans. It helps to arrive already in a pair as team cohesion begins early. The equipment is as important as the sliders, and the very basics are taught well before those spikes touch the ice. The first ever slide feels exhilarating, making you wonder where this feeling has been all your life! It is a rush like no other and that feeling, shared with your team mate, that you have the first time that you pilot the bobsleigh successfully down the mountain, is truly unforgettable. Long lasting friendships are forged from these grass root training weeks, and some of our country’s finest international athletes began their life in this professional sport at these very camps. Should you do it? Hell, yes… if you want to make life-long friends, open up doors to international sport, race in an adrenaline fuelled environment and finish every day with that “holy mother of bobsleigh, I’m alive!” feeling then apply this season. Limited spaces are available, and are high in demand.

If you wish to get involved visit the AWSA website for more information, or contact Captain Sarah Smith at bobsleigh@AWSA.org.uk.