Day 1 of the Delancey British Alpine Ski Championships In Meribel
Having just missed out on a gilt edged opportunity to score a valuable final run of results because the Nor-Am Cup finals in Quebec, Canada were cancelled over recent days, Norwich's Thomas 'TJ' Baldwin put aside jet lag, fatigue and lingering frustration to win the first title of the Delancey British National Ski Championships in Meribel, France today - the Men's NC Super G.
It was record hot spring weather in Quebec which summarily killed off the championships which the Norwich skier had flown especially to Canada for.
Arriving back to Europe last night, empty handed from a season's finale event for which the odds were stacked in favour of a lucrative jump in ranking points, Baldwin today successfully defended the Super G title he won on the same Meribel piste last year, defeating a strong field of 88 skiers from 12 different nations in a well-run, technically demanding Super G race which beat the fast rising temperatures.
"I only got back into Munich yesterday and it was a long drive down, so this was always going to be tight. It feels a bit tough on the body with the travelling but I knew this was coming so I am pleased to win today." said Baldwin. "Of course it's disappointing to have been all that way to Quebec and be beaten by freak weather, the warmest its been there at this time of year for 20 years."
"Today was just about making sure I got on the top step of the podium. I did enough and so I am happy. And it is nice to make back-to-back titles now hopefully I can do it in the downhill as well."
"It is always great to be at the British Champs. Now here I am one of the older guys, the one the younger guys are gunning for and hoping to take down, and so that is a nice challenge."
Top seeded Baldwin skied a time of 1 min 22.88 secs to finish 35 hundredths of a second ahead of Lancashire's Bradley Morgan, with Roy-Alexander Steudle from Ascot just over one second behind in third place.
Alex Tilley's (Aberdeen) win in the Women's Super G is just her second British senior title, following up on her Giant Slalom triumph here last year, but her first ever major win in a speed discipline.
Gordon Skiers' Tilley, who took her first steps on skis at the local Afford dry ski slope as a 'late starter' at eight years old, lead a 1-2 for Scottish racers in the women's event as Perthshire's Charlotte Guest finished runner up 1.13 seconds behind Tilley.
"I am pretty happy, though I messed up in a couple of places, but it was quite a technical course, but it worked out well for me. I am not going to lie, when I finished I was not really sure how my time would be." Alex Tilley said, "I have never been much of a speed skier, but my Super G is coming along well. But I have not done very much Downhill so we will just have to see how that goes over the next few days. I am really enjoying it though."
~ Ends ~
Or Kirsty Buchanan on +44 207 842 5764 or email BuchananK@teamGB.com
For further information about Delancey please contact Katharine Walsh on +44 207 448 1461 / +44 7957 855102 or email Katharine.firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to Editors:
~ The Delancey British National Alpine Ski Championships (25th March to 2nd April) is the biggest event on the British alpine calendar, and provides the opportunity for young British athletes to race on the same pistes recently chosen by FIS to host the Finals of the Alpine Ski World Cup in 2015.
~ British Ski and Snowboard (BSS) is the National Governing Body for Skiing and Snowboarding in the United Kingdom. It is a new organisation which has been set up as the successor to the previous federation, under the aegis of the British Olympic Association. The British Olympic Association stepped in and launched BSS to ensure that Athletes within the FIS British Ski and Snowboard aims to see British skiers and riders on the podiums at world events in the next four to eight years.
~ Delancey is a specialist real estate investment advisory company who continue to provide enormous support to British Alpine Skiing, and who have recently partnered with Qatari Diar to purchase and lead the legacy of the Athletes Village in the Queen Elizabeth Park after the 2012 Games.