Shelley Rudman

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Shelley Rudman
2010 Olympic Winter Games Opening Ceremony - Great Britain entering cropped.jpg
Rudman holding British flag at the opening ceremony of the 2010 Winter Olympics.
Medal record
Women's Skeleton
Representing  Great Britain
Olympic Games
Silver medal – second place 2006 Turin Women
World Championships
Gold medal – first place 2013 St. Moritz Women
Skeleton World Cup
Gold medal – first place 2011–2012 Women
Silver medal – second place 2008–09 Women
Silver medal – second place 2009–10 Women
Silver medal – second place 2010–11 Women
Bronze medal – third place 2012-13 Women
European Bob and Skeleton Championships
Gold medal – first place 2009 St. Moritz Women
Gold medal – first place 2011 St. Moritz Women
Silver medal – second place 2006 Igls Women
Silver medal – second place 2014 Germany Women
Bronze medal – third place 2010 Winterberg Women
Bronze medal – third place 2012 Germany Women
Winter Universiade
Gold medal – first place 2005 Innsbruck Women's Skeleton
British Skeleton ranking
Gold medal – first place 2004 -2012 Women's Skeleton

Shelley Rudman (born 23 March 1981) is one of Britain's most successful skeleton bobsleigh athletes, the 2013 world champion in that event, an Olympic silver medal at the 2006 Winter Olympic Games in skeleton (the only medal for Great Britain at the Games) and a former World Cup and European champion.

Originally from Pewsey, Wiltshire and currently residing back in Wiltshire after spending 9 years living in Sheffield, UK.

Early career[edit]

She took up the sport of skeleton after a university friend and GB skeleton athlete Greg Kirk introduced her to the sport in October 2002 at the University of Bath push track. Rudman went for the GB skeleton development team selection at the University of Bath which would allow her to join a funded programme, but wasn't successful in making the team. At the time Rudman was working full-time at the ACS International Schools, Cobham, Surrey and also in her third year of a BSc Degree course at St Mary's College, Twickenham. She decided to apply for an Ice school in Norway run by the British military to pursue the sport and realise her dream of being selected for Great Britain by funding herself around tracks in Europe along with 2 other British servicemen.

The following season in 2003 (after having only three weeks on ice training since starting the sport), she qualified for the World Junior Championships where she finished in 10th position and highest-ranked British female. In 2004 she won the Europa Cup in Igls, Austria. In 2005 she won gold in the World University Games.

Since 2006, Rudman has been self-coaching and learning the tracks herself throughout the World Cup seasons.

2006 Winter Olympics[edit]

In order for her to take part in the 2006 Olympics, Rudman needed £4000 to pay for a new professional sled. Her home town held a special sponsored canoe event (canoeing from Pewsey to Bath where she was training) to help raise the money, and they succeeded. Rudman also spent some time as a supply teacher at Devizes School, a secondary school located in Devizes, Wiltshire.

By the time the 2006 Winter Olympics began in Turin, Rudman said she was aiming for a top 10 position; however, during a practice run she had the fastest time, even beating the World Champion at the time. This great performance in the practice run made the public become aware of her. In the first heat, she was 4th; however, after a brilliant second heat, she finished with a silver medal. Live television pictures were shown from her local pub, where a large crowd that had gathered to watch her race were cheering and celebrating her victory. The 2006 Olympics were only intended to be a stepping-stone for her as training for the 2010 Winter Olympics.

On her return to Pewsey the village put on an open top bus tour where thousands of people attended to witness her return to Pewsey. The whole event was an incredible moment of community spirit and support and one which everyone remembers in Pewsey.

Skeleton World Cup performances: 2007–2009[edit]

After a summer of media commitments from winning her Olympic Silver medal, Rudman returned to the British selection races in Lillehammer where she set an unofficial track record. During the season an ongoing knee injury flared up, causing her to have intensive knee physiotherapy to get her through the remaining World Cup rounds to keep the points up for the GB team before returning to the UK after the World Championships in St Moritz to have immediate knee surgery.

Rudman's best finish at the FIBT World Championships was 10th in the women's skeleton event at St. Moritz in 2007. She later announced that she was to become a mother in October and would be taking half the following season off.

She sat out the 2007–08 Skeleton World Cup season to give birth to her daughter Ella Marie and have a knee operation (although returned to the Inter-continental circuit in North America in January where she finished second (Park City) and won the penultimate race in Lake Placid), and made an impact on her return to the sport for the 2008–09 season. Rudman won the 2008–09 Skeleton World Cup event at Igls, Austria on 12 December 2008.[1] She then earned her second medal of her 2008/09 World Cup campaign with a silver medal at Königssee in Germany, in January 2009.

Success continued as Rudman won the 2009 European Bob Skeleton Championships at the St Moritz track in Switzerland, breaking the track record with a time of 1:09.97 on her second run. She finished the season 2nd in the overall World Rankings published by the FIBT.

FIBT World Cup: 2009–10 season[edit]

Rudman repeated her feat of finishing the season in 2nd place overall in the World Cup, behind champion Mellissa Hollingsworth of Canada. Highlights of the season were two Gold medal wins in Cesana and St. Moritz. The season's results were;

Round 1
Park City, USA – 4th place
Round 2
Lake Placid, USA – Silver Medal (2nd place)
Round 3
Cesana (Torino), Italy – Gold Medal (1st place)
Round 4
Winterberg, Germany – 4th place
Round 5
Altenberg, Germany – 7th place
Round 6
Konigssee, Germany – Bronze Medal (3rd place)
Round 7
St Moritz, Switzerland – Gold Medal (1st place)
Round 8
Igls, Austria – 4th place

The Igls race also counted as the 2010 European Championships, and Rudman finished with the Bronze Medal in 3rd place.

2010 Winter Olympics[edit]

On 29 January 2010, Rudman was officially announced as part of the Team GB Skeleton Bobsleigh squad to compete at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada.

Rudman was the flagbearer for Britain at those games.

An hour's delay to the race start affected the settings Rudman had chosen for the first run which resulted in Rudman being unusually down in the overall standings after day one. The following day after analysing and changing her settings she set the fastest time of the day, nearly breaking the track record and breaking her push start PB, and finished in first rank out of all the competitors, but the time deficit from the previous day was too much to catch up and she finished 6th overall in the women's skeleton – just missing out on claiming a second Olympic medal. The gold was won by fellow British competitor Amy Williams.

World rankings progression[edit]

  • 2007–08 36th
  • 2008–09 2nd
  • 2009–10 2nd
  • 2010–11 2nd
  • 2011–12 1st
  • 2012–13 7th
  • 2013–14 3rd

Based on end of season FIBT rankings.

Sponsors & support[edit]

Since 2006, Rudman has used skeleton sleds designed and manufactured by partner Kristan Bromley's company, Bromley Technologies Ltd, at the Advanced Manufacturing Park (AMP). Since 2012, Rudman has been sponsored by Mazda UK, Samsung, P&G, Adidas, BMW, King of Shaves Woman, Bacardi Breezer, Gyro.

Rudman supports the following charities:

Personal life[edit]

Rudman is engaged to fellow British skeleton competitor Kristan Bromley, with whom she has daughters Ella-Marie Rudman-Bromley, born in October 2007,[2] and Sofia Rudman-Bromley, born January 2015.[3][4]

Rudman is a qualified Personal trainer and Performance coach and actively involved in encouraging people to be active and healthy.

In February 2016, Shelley was nominated to be an International Olympic Committee Athlete Role Model for the Winter Youth Olympicsi(YOG)n Lillehammer, Norway. This involved Shelley being out at the Youth Olympics encouraging, supporting and mentoring all the young International athletes during the event which was very successful.

Awards[edit]

TV[edit]

She has appeared on the following television shows:

Events[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Rudman claims World Cup gold in Igls Morethanthegames – The Online destination for Olympic sports news, 12 December 2008
  2. ^ "Rudman aims to get back training". BBC Sport. 29 October 2007. 
  3. ^ "Shelley Rudman to miss season after announcing pregnancy". bbc.co.uk. 27 September 2014. Retrieved 28 September 2014. 
  4. ^ "Yay, skeleton team babies!!!!". twitter.com. 19 January 2015. Retrieved 15 February 2015. 

External links[edit]

Olympic Games
Preceded by
Rhona Martin
Flagbearer for  Great Britain
Vancouver 2010
Succeeded by
Jon Eley