SKELETON: Opening display pleases Shelley
SHELLEY Rudman declared herself satisfied with her opening performance in the FIBT Skeleton World Cup series after finishing seventh at Lake Placid last week.
Rudman, 31, shrugged off the effects of a pre-season hamstring problem to climb up the leaderboard with the final outing of the three-run event in the United States.
Canadian Sarah Reid took her first World Cup victory, but the Pewsey slider told the Gazette & Herald: “Although I’m always keen to try and get on the podium, I’m fairly happy with the way the first World Cup race went given the circumstances in the build-up to it.
“Out in Lillehammer (prior to the season), I strained my hamstring so it’s been a race against time to try and get back to full fitness for both the (GB) selection races and the World Cup.
“I’ve been on a leg rehab programme for the past four weeks and it has been a slow build-up from only being able to jog off at the start to getting my leg robust enough to cope with the explosive start and not break down again when it comes to 100 per cent effort in races.
“It coped really well in the first race and my start times improved each run, so now it's a case of getting my legs ‘race fit.’’
Rudman also gave the the thumbs-up to the new two-day race format employed at Lake Placid which saw sliders complete two qualifying runs before the top 10 went on the ice for a third time.
She said: “They are testing out a few new race formats to see how well they fare with the public and viewing figures.
“It also means that skeleton can get scheduled in when bobsleigh are racing which means that the public get to see two extreme sports taking place on the same day.
“I think we all found it a little bizarre returning for only one run, but it was really great to be up at the track competing when the mens bobsleigh race was taking place.
“Usually our paths don’t cross on a race day and there was a great atmosphere.’’
MORE AHEAD ON SHELLEY'S OPENING WORLD CUP PERFORMANCE IN LAKE PLACID IN THURSDAY'S GAZETTE & HERALD AND NEWS OF HER PROGRESS AT THE SECOND EVENT IN UTAH TOMORROW AT GAZETTEANDHERALD.CO.UK/SPORT