Introducing Athlete Role Models Vincent Defrasne and Barbara Kendall
“Never say never.” That’s the life motto of Olympic gold medallist Vincent Defrasne, who will be coming to the first Winter Youth Olympic Games in Innsbruck next January to pass on his wealth of experience to the next generation of winter athletes as an Athlete Role Model.
It is this drive that saw the French biathlete power to victory in an epic battle to the finish at the Turin 2006 Winter Olympic Games. This and his other secret weapon, “the magic porridge”.
“Created by the cook of the French team, the magic porridge is made of oats, milk, salt, pine seeds, fructose, and fresh and dried fruits,” Vincent explains. “It is all served with a big smile and the order to finish it!”
Fellow Athlete Role Model and Olympic windsurfing champion Barbara Kendall also has some awesome advice, born out of her own amazing Olympic story.
“I broke my arm eight months before an Olympics and was told I would never windsurf again. It put me into a spin as the Olympics had been my life goal,” the New Zealand athlete recalls.
“When I was able to sail again, I realised how lucky I was and my whole attitude to sailing changed. Every day counted; I sailed with passion and gratitude; and I ended up winning the gold medal. If I hadn’t broken my arm I wouldn’t have had that reality check and would not have had such a positive attitude.”