Bethany Widdup is peak performer

Bethany Wiidup has the logo of her sponsors Walkers Bakers and Chocolatiers on her helmet

Bethany Wiidup has the logo of her sponsors Walkers Bakers and Chocolatiers on her helmet

First published in Sport

We started 2014 with 11 races across Europe. The first ones were in Bad Wiessee, Germany, and although there was little snow, we still managed to race three slaloms. I had a mixed bag of results.

In the first, race I finished 21st, scoring 71.80 points, which at that stage was a personal best, while on the third day I improved to 16th place, with another personal best of 58.68, bringing my slalom points down even more.

The lower the points the better your start number for the following races.

I have now been selected for the British CIT team, another stepping stone for this season and I hope to be able to score more points to help the team improve its rankings in the Arnold Lund World Cup.

The next set of races were grand slaloms in Santa Caterina, Italy, which did not go very well as I crashed on the first run the first day and did not start the second run due to being ill.

We then travelled to St. Moritz in Switzerland for the Swiss University races, where I achieved my first podium finish of the season .

I was third overall in the slalom, before moving on to Champery for the Welsh Championships, featuring predominately British comp- etitors.

Hoping to carry forward my form from the previous race, I had a good slalom first run.

It placed me second British girl 0.13 seconds behind the first GBR girl and with another personal best of 87.07.

However, due to a hard set course and deteriorating snow conditions, the second run was a fight to stay in the course and I unfortunately made an error, losing a lot of speed.

However, I managed to finish and gained my second podium of the season with another third overall.

We then drove eight hours across to Passo Rolle in Italy, where I have never skied before.

In both slalom races, I had one good run that I was happy with, but made a few mistakes in my second run, resulting in lost time.

Although it wasn’t as successful as it could have been, my coach and I were very happy with the runs and it is now a matter of working hard to produce consistent performances on two runs.

With over half of the season done, I am happy with my progression both technically and in my results in both slalom and giant slalom, more so in the former, which I have always been that much more confident in.

It was also satisfying to get my first two podiums for overall positions under my belt, and it’s now a case of building on that and hopefully getting more.

The programme started up again last Saturday with a few weeks training.

The next races will be the English Championships in Bormio, Italy.

Bethany’s main sponsors are Walkers Bakers and Chocolatiers in Skipton. She worked at the Water Street shop last summer to help fund her current winter season and she now sports the Walkers logo on her ski helmet.

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