BOBSLEIGH: Steady as he goes for John
GREAT Britain driver John Jackson is confident results will improve as he edges towards full fitness in this season’s FIBT Bobsleigh World Cup.
Trowbridge pilot Jackson, who had surgery in the summer after rupturing his Achilles, returned to the ice for the opening round of the 2013-14 series in Calgary, Canada, last weekend.
The Royal Marines Commando, 36, guided his four-man crew to 17th place in the four-man event.
Jackson had Stuart Benson, Bruce Tasker and former Great Britain sprinter Craig Pickering on board, the Paxcroft Mead driver and Tasker finishing 21st in the two-man event earlier.
Jackson has been playing catch-up with his fitness since suffering the injury earlier this year, which threatened his participation in next February’s Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia.
The series moves on to Park City in Utah for the second round this weekend, with Jackson reflecting on a steady start to his campaign.
“We were happy with the pushes but the overall result was not what we'd hoped for off the start we had,’’ he told the Wiltshire Times.
“We are testing new equipment that I still hadn't quite got the feel of going into the race.
“I’m still not 100 per cent and we are progressing, but I can’t thank the medical team enough for the work they have done.
“I think I'm ahead of where we thought I would be at this point but we will only get better as a team as I improve physically. ‘’ Great Britain women’s number one Paula Walker, who lives with Jackson in Trowbridge, finished 10th in the opening round of the women's two-man event in Calgary, with brakewoman Rebekah Wilson.
The duo clocked 57.56 for their first run before improving with 56.82 in the second.
Walker returns to Park City, where she won the 2010 Junior World Championship, this weekend.
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