CHICHESTER’S Jack Gower might have been the stand-out performer for Great Britain at the European Youth Olympic Winter Festival – but that didn’t stop the alpine skier wanting more from his Liberec trip.
First up for the 16-year-old was the giant slalom but, despite heading into the race as the reigning under-17 world champion, Gower had to settle for 22nd with a time of 1.41.44min.
But the Blythe Hall School pupil dusted himself off to finish a personal-best 17th in the slalom in 1.29.61, impressive considering it was his first slalom race of the year.
And he wasn’t done there: he formed a quarter of Great Britain’s parallel giant slalom team which saw off Georgia 4-0 in the first round before losing to Germany by the same scoreline in the next.
Gower would have liked more to show from his Czech Republic adventure but insists the future looks bright.
“Doing the team event to finish my week in Liberec was and a great way to round off a great trip,” he said.
“I’m a bit annoyed my ski came off – I decided to take my dad’s skis for the race and they perhaps weren’t tight enough, but it was still great to do.
“I just wish I had done better in the giant slalom as that is my event.
“But I was really pleased with the slalom as it isn’t usually my event. It was tough but it was nice to do well after the giant slalom.
“I’ll learn from it all but I’m full of confidence – if I can do that well in an event I don’t usually do well in, hopefully there is more to come.”
Gower had the honour of signing off Team GB’s time in Liberec after being nominated as flag-bearer for the closing ceremony for his consistently good performances. Gower said he couldn’t have asked for a better end to the event.
The BOA prepares and leads the ‘Best of British’ at the summer, winter and youth Olympics. It supports Team GB and national governing bodies to enhance Olympic success and is responsible for championing the Olympic values. See www.olympics.org.uk