Airdrie athletes compete at Olympics in Sochi
Thursday, Feb 20, 2014 06:00 am
Although they were unable to make it on to the podium at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, Airdrie athletes Brianne Tutt and Mellisa Hollingsworth made their presences felt in their respective events.
Tutt, who was competing in her first Olympic Games, finished in 35th place out of 36 competitors with a time of 2:03.69 in the women’s 1,500m speed skating event, which took place on Feb. 16.
“It was not the race I wanted, but considering where I came from I can not be disappointed,” Tutt said on her Twitter feed following the race. “Thank you everyone for your support, it means the world.”
The 21-year-old Tutt’s journey to the Olympics was an incredible one, as she recovered from serious injuries in a training accident in Dec. 2012 to earn a spot on the team during the Olympic Trials in Calgary on Jan. 2.
In the accident, Tutt suffered a broken collarbone, ribs, a cracked vertebra, a skull fracture, a loss of hearing in her left ear and Bell’s Palsy.
“I didn’t think this was going to happen this year, as I thought that this season was going be a bit of a write-off for me,” Tutt said prior to leaving for Sochi.
“It’s pretty amazing what someone can do though when they are doing what they love to do, and they put in a whole year of dedication and hard work to achieve their goals.”
The 33-year-old Hollingsworth ended up finishing in 11th place out of 20 competitors in the women’s skeleton event on Feb. 14 with a combined four-run time of 3:56.21.
“It didn’t go as I would have hoped, but I was able to tie for the second fastest run in the final heat, which was a great way to finish things up,” Hollingsworth said on Twitter afterwards.
A bronze medal winner at the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin, Italy, Hollingsworth was unable to earn a second medal in what proved to be the final event of her skeleton career, as she announced her retirement following her last run.
“To have my final ever run down a course go as well as it did was a nice way to go out,” she added.