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Narracott and Farrow to bring the heat on skeleton track

Published 25 January 2018 (AEDT)

SKELETON: Australia is set to have a full contingent of skeleton athletes for the PyeongChang 2018 Games with John Farrow and Jackie Narracott selected to don the green and gold at the Alpensia Sliding Centre in South Korea.

35-year-old Farrow will make his second Olympic appearance in the men’s event, while Narracott is set to grace the Olympic stage for the first time in the women’s event.

“It’s hard to put into words exactly what selection means,” Narracott said.

“I’ve had this dream since I was 9 years old so achieving it is both surreal and hugely exciting!”

Inspired by her uncle Paul, the first Australian to compete at both a summer (Athletics - Los Angeles 84) and winter (Bobsleigh - Calgary 92) Games, Jackie said her selection is momentous for her family.

“It’s very special given our history. To be the next generation to follow in his footsteps is amazing.”

The 26-year-old outlined specific performance aims for the Games, and the Queenslander believes a top 10 finish is very achievable.

“From a process point of view, it’s all about staying composed and executing,” Narracott said.

“If I can walk away from the Games knowing that I stayed composed and executed each run to the best of my abilities then I’ll be happy. Control what I can and the result will take care of itself.”

For John Farrow, 2018 selection marks his second Olympic campaign after the Sydney-sider made his debut four years ago at Sochi 2014.

“In 2014 I was so thrilled to be selected. In 2018 I expected it and have worked hard to be the best I can be,” Farrow said.

“I can’t wait to get there and put in my best effort for all my friends, family and Australia.”

Farrow said he will display a greater sense of calm and focus the second time around, as a more experienced athlete he believes his performance processes have improved since Sochi. 

“Over the last 4 years I have grown quite independent as an athlete, my knowledge and understanding of every minor situation is so much more.”

Farrow, who became a father to daughter Isla in September 2017, said his aim for the Games has always been bring home Australia’s best result in skeleton, a feat he achieved in Sochi when he finished 17th.

“I want to continue that growth upwards so that the younger athletes behind me can carry that on and take it to the top, I hope to push the limit higher so we can continue that trend into 2022 and beyond.

“I want see the strength and depth in Australian skeleton get bigger and better.”

Both Farrow and Narracott have trained on the South Korea track and say while it is fast, weather will be a huge factor in the Olympic competition.

“I think the weather conditions will come into play,” Farrow said.

“I have only trained in warmer conditions and there is a chance for some real cold in the time we are there, so I am preparing for all situations and not just the conditions we have trained in.

Narracott had the added bonus of competing in a World Cup on the track at the Alpensia Sliding Centre.

“I’m expecting it to be different to when we were there last,” said Narracott.

“The corners will probably be shaped slightly differently, the temperatures will be different and hopefully the ice will be like glass. Also, there’s hopefully going to be a massive crowd!”

Farrow will compete on Days 6 (February 15) and 7 (February 16), with Narracott to follow on Day 7 and 8 (February 17) at the Alpensia Sliding Centre. 

Ashleigh Knight

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