The popularity of ice sports continues to grow in the Army a fact which was clearly in evidence at the Army Ice championships – Exercise Racing Ice II – which were held from 24 Jan to 3 Feb 18 in Winterberg, Germany. Exercise RACING ICE 2 is the Army Novice, Junior and Senior Ice Championships and consists of the Skeleton, Luge and Bobsleigh disciplines. Soldiers completed a week of training to familiarise themselves with the difficult track before they began a full day of racing. Not only at stake was the chance to be crowned the Army Champions but also the opportunity to be selected for the Army team and progress to the Inter services championships later this month.
Speaking of the Championships Major Gillian Cooke, chair of Army Bobsleigh, said:
“We have been rewarded with some remarkable performances over the course of the exercise across all the disciplines. It has been incredibly rewarding seeing soldiers, particularly the novices, take on what is a hard track to drive and see their confidence and ability lift as the exercise progressed. Winter sports are dangerous, they are adrenaline sports, but that’s why we do these activities. Sports such as these assist in our military roles and personal development because we push ourselves out of our comfort zones into areas where we are less comfortable. In this type of environment where you are facing slightly difficult circumstances the importance of teamwork is quite key to overcome these challenges as you see everyone supporting and helping each out. Because of this the rewards are fantastic.”
After some competitive and closely fought races the following individuals emerged as worthy winners in their respective discipline and crowed Army champions:
Men’s champion – Lance Corporal (L/Cpl) Jackson 29, Regt Royal Logistic Corps
Women’s champion – Captain Graham, Adjutant General’s Corps
Men’s champion – Guardsman Thompson, 1 Irish Guards
Women’s champion – Sergeant Scott, Queen Alexandra’s Royal Army Nursing Corps
Men’s champions – L/Cpl Londal and L/Cpl Ray 3 Parachute Regiment
Women’s champions – Warrant Officer 2nd Class Smith, Royal School of Artillery and 2nd Lieutenant Elkington 26 Regiment Royal Artillery.