Excited by the new sport of ski slopestyle? Team GB athlete and YOGgie Katie Summerhayes gives us an insight into her world, her YOG experience and how she is preparing for the big event!
So you were at Innsbruck 2012 where slopestyle made its Youth Olympic Games debut. How was it?
I represented Team GB in Innsbruck 2012 at the age of 16. I was totally blown away and feel so lucky to have experienced it. People can you tell you what going to the Olympics is going to be like, but I think this experience really helps prepare you the best.
Pulling on the Team GB kit for the very first time was like a dream come true. When you go to kitting-out and you open your bag and just keep on pulling out more and more stuff, it’s just so cool! Being part of Team GB for the Winter Youth Olympic Games and being in it together is an amazing experience, but to be nominated by my teammates to carry the British flag made it even more special.
You have been injured; how have you got over it?
My preparations for Sochi could have gone better, as I have been recovering from a ruptured ACL, but I have been in the gym working hard at getting stronger and I also had a fantastic rehab programme. The BOA’s Intensive Rehabilitation Unit (IRU) was the best thing I could have done. It’s an amazing place with such friendly staff and has equipment that is second to none.
In one word, how would you describe ski slopestyle?
The one word I would use to describe slopestyle skiing is simply “cool”. Our discipline is judged by how effortless and stylish our moves are. If you’ve never seen slopestyle skiing check it out here:
Tell us more!
We ski and perform tricks down a slope with various types of obstacles like rails, quarter-pipes and jumps. My favourite trick is a switch 540°with Japanese grab. We compete on just one day, with semi-finals and finals, and two runs in each round. The skier awarded the most number of points wins.
What will you do when you are not competing?
If I were to have a day off when I’m in Sochi, I would love to go and see some of the other events. I would love to see figure skating, especially the singles competition. I don’t understand how they get such height just off one foot and can perform such amazing spins!