THERE will be a strong Solihull Mohawks presence at this weekend’s 2016 Short Track Speed Skating European Championships in Sochi, Russia.
Redditch’s Charlotte Gilmartin, Farrell Treacy, Richard Shoebridge and Paul Stanley are all chasing medals in Great Britain Short Track colours at the venue which hosted the 2014 Winter Olympics.
The British skaters will be up against some of their fiercest rivals across the three-day (January 22-24) event and their charge for medals will be spearheaded by talismanic Scot Elise Christie who has medalled in the last three years of Europeans with two golds in 2013, a gold and silver in 2014 and two golds, a silver and overall title in 2015.
Returning from injury, Christie has shown her commitment and drive by coming back with an impressive start to the 2015/16 season, including two silver medals and one gold in World Cup events.
Alongside Christie, team-mates Gilmartin, Treacy and Jack Whelbourne will be taking to the ice in the 500m, 1,000m and 1,500m events.
Fresh from her first World Cup medal in Shanghai last month, British women’s number two Gilmartin hopes to make just as strong an impression in Russia and add to the individual bronze medal she won in the 2013 European Championships.
For Treacy, one of the younger skaters in the squad, last year’s season included an impressive overall bronze medal at the Europa Cup Final and he is currently ranked fourth after the British Championships, so he is looking forward to gaining more experience on an international level.
Meanwhile, Whelbourne is just beginning his international season having ended last season with an injury.
Upon returning to competition at the international Star Class event in Nottingham earlier this month, he proved he is back with a vengeance by claiming gold in the 500m and 1,000m events.
Also featuring in the championships is the men’s 5,000m relay which will see Whelbourne and Treacy back on the ice alongside Shoebridge, Josh Cheetham and Stanley.
For updates follow Twitter @GB_ShortTrack or Facebook ‘GB Short Track’.
For live results throughout the competition visit isu.org. You can watch the competition live at www.eurovisionsports.tv or shorttrack.sportresult.com.