New winter training Centre is a game changer for Abbey Willcox

Jenna Harris October 16, 2020 6 No Comments

New winter training facility is a game changer for Abbey Willcox



Growing upward, Abbey Willcox’s first love was running, beginning when she was only five years old and continued to compete for another decade.

But during this decade, Willcox also acquired a love of skiing.

It was likewise a romance she shared with all the rest of her loved ones, who’d go to the Snowy Mountains at Jindabyne after a year .

Little did Willcox understand that one day her two loves will come together at a game apparently made for her.

Willcox’s mother could have had an inkling just a tiny bit sooner.

“I remember watching the 2002 Winter Olympics when Alisa Camplin won the gold medal in freestyle aerial skiing,” stated Willcox.

“It was surreal even though I didn’t know what aerial skiing was at that point. But I do remember my mum saying to me, ‘You could do that one day’.”

Willcox’s chance came when she had been 16 years old. She was asked if she’d love to attempt airborne ski as it could combine her two loves: gymnastics and skiing.

“I started and I loved it,” stated Willcox.

And since she has not looked back.

(Photo provided )

Willcox has had a huge increase through the game, winning the initial World Cup decoration of her career before this season on Day two of the FIS Freestyle World Cup at Deer Valley, Utah.

“Deer Valley is one of the bigger events for freestyle skiing. Everyone on the circuit just loves it. It is the Superbowl of freestyle skiing,” stated Willcox.

“I did not expect to make the podium. I was only going out there to perform my very best.

“My previous best result was top 12, so to make the top three and get a bronze medal at one of the first World Cups of the year was very exciting.”

Fortunately for Willcox, her mother and father were in the crowd too. Her parents typically require one excursion to Utah annually to observe Willcox compete, therefore she considers herself blessed that they chose that occasion.

While the pandemic has meant significant changes to Willcox’s training program, with the recent introduction of this new Olympic Winter Training Centre at Brisbane, this could mean Willcox has to spend more time at home in the next several years.

This training center is going to be the new home base for your own Flying Kangaroos and provide them the chance to train throughout the year.

For Willcox, this brand new centre is a game changer.

“It is a world-class facility and the only facility of its kind in the southern hemisphere. It is everything and more that we need to train for the Olympics,” stated Willcox.

Winter Olympic Training Centre

(Photo provided )

From top of this 37-metre-high centre, athletes may achieve maximum speeds of over 70 mph and start around 17 metres over the water, providing them the opportunity to practice manoeuvres using a water dip. But the centre has one other important advantage.

“With the other water ramps overseas, they have to stop in November when the snow comes in, whereas with this facility in Australia we can train all year round and through the summer,” stated Willcox.

“It is the only water ramp open 12 months of the year.”

I inquired Willcox exactly what it feels like to stand on peak of this 37 metre ramp. Looking at photographs alone is sufficient to make me feel nauseous. Willcox guarantees me it makes her feel somewhat nauseous too.

“I don’t think there is a day where I’m not a little bit scared out there when I am training,” stated Willcox.

“But you learn to trust yourself and your ability and it stops becoming a factor. You just get out there and do what you want to do.”

Given her age, Willcox is in the start of her career and like she seemed up into the likes of Camplin and Lydia Lassila, another generation of Aussie freestyle skiers will probably be seeking for her also.

With World Cup success plus also a Winter Olympics not too much off, Willcox continues her training and is working on a brand new manoeuvre she expects to land shortly.

“At the moment I am working on triple twisting double flips,” stated Willcox.

“I really enjoy that ability since there are a lot of twists and it’s some thing to master. I finally need to be doing triple somersaults on snow.

“I love the feeling of them on the trampoline and on the bungee and can’t imagine the adrenaline rush when I land it on snow.”

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