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Michelle Kelly, skeleton racer

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At the very end of a frustrating 2004/05 season, Michelle Kelly has a moment of glory. She has taken the bronze medal in skeleton at the world championships in Calgary, wiping away her unsuccessful year and filling her with confidence in her bid to be on the Canadian skeleton team at the 2006 Turin Olympics. Kelly has taken a long, circuitous road, beginning with a childhood dream of competing as a gymnast before trying diving, soccer and bobsleigh. In this interview with CBC Radio, Kelly says the final move to skeleton came about as the result of a dare.
• Kelly was born in Port St. John, B.C., on Nov. 7, 1974.

• Before 2002, skeleton had only been raced at two Olympic Games, in 1928 and 1948, when the Olympics were held in Switzerland. Women competed in Olympic skeleton for the first time in 2002, when it was re-introduced at the Salt Lake City Games.

• With teammate Lindsay Alcock, Michelle Kelly was a member of the two-person women's team representing Canada at Salt Lake City. She placed 10th overall, while Alcock placed sixth. There were 13 women competing.

• Kelly did not make the team for the 2006 Turin Olympic games. The Canadian team was very strong, however, winning three of a possible six medals (gold and silver in men's and a bronze in women's).

• In 2009 Kelly was plagued with questions about the eligibility of her sled runners, making it hard for her to stay focused on her racing. In spite of this, Kelly realized her dream of making the Canadian team at the 2010 Vancouver Games, hoping to end her skeleton career with a place on the podium in her home province, where it all began.

• Kelly did not win a medal at the 2010 Olympics. She finished in 13th place.

• Skeleton athletes grasp the handles of their heavy but small steel and fiberglass sleds, run beside them for 40metres, then dive aboard, sailing headfirst down the icy track. Tracks around the world vary in length but average approximately 1.5 km.


Medium: Radio
Program: All Points West
Broadcast Date: Feb. 24, 2005
Guest: Michelle Kelly
Resource: Jo-Ann Roberts
Duration: 7:54
Photo credit: Jeff McIntosh/Canadian Press

Last updated: February 14, 2014

Page consulted on October 27, 2014

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