ABIGAIL Vieira finished in 42nd position in the alpine skiing women’s super giant slalom on her and TT’s debut at the Winter Youth Olympic Games in Lausanne, Switzerland, on Friday. She described the occasion as the best moment in her life.
Of the 62 athletes scheduled to compete in the event, 50 completed the course, nine did not finish and three did not start.
Vieira, 17, finished in one minute, 02.58 seconds (1:02.58). Amelie Klopfenstein of Switzerland made the home conditions count as she claimed gold in 56.27. She was trailed closely by Caitlin McFarlane of France in 56.35 and Noa Szollos of Israel (56.36).
Vieira had a strong start but lost some momentum in the middle of the race before closing convincingly, including a challenging jump.
On representing TT at the Olympics, Vieira told TT press officer Veronika Muehlhofer, “This is the greatest day of my life.”
On the race Vieira said it was an enjoyable experience.
“It was good, the snow was great, the course was really rhythmic and easy to follow, it was fun. At the beginning I tried to push myself a little more, I was feeling the speed and just thought, ‘Keep on going.’ Coming off the last jump I felt like I could have gone a little bit more.”
On Saturday, Vieira will line up in the alpine skiing combined slalom at 7.30 am TT time.
Vieira is joined in Switzerland by her family who is also doubling as her technical staff. Assisting her are her father Richard (chef de mission), mother Alison (support staff) and sister Ria (assistant coach). On experiencing the Olympics with her family Abigail said, “It’s so great to have your family there, they are such a great support system.”
TT was represented at the Senior Winter Olympics in bobsleigh previously.