Friday, December 8, 2023

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Mapperley teen gets her skates on for British call-up


A teenager from Mapperley said it was a real ‘wow’ moment when she got the call to represent the nation in a world championship.

Holly Hoyland is joining up with the GB squad to compete against junior world champion speed skaters from around the world at the ISU World Junior Short Track Speed Skating Championships in Italy this weekend.

The 19-year-old has been skating since the age of just four and has travelled all over the world to take part in competitions.

When Holly flies out to Bormio in Italy later this month, she will not only be one of the youngest competitors, but she is also the only female from her team to qualify.

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Holly is also working hard to balance her busy training schedule with studying a Level 3 Aviation course at Nottingham College.

She said: “Speed skating has been a passion of mine for a very long time, but I also really enjoy my course and I know it’s important to keep up with my studies so that I have options outside of skating.”

Holly, who is part of the Speed Skating Performance Programme, qualified for the Junior World Championships and for the World Cup team in Montreal, Canada in November last year coming 13th out of 60 in the 1000m race.

She said: “It was a real ‘wow’ moment when I realised I’d qualified. I’m still a junior so I was really chuffed with myself. I’m excited to be competing in a senior competition at a higher level with people who really want to race; it’ll be like stepping into the real world.

 “I’m aiming for the 2026 Olympics and these competitions have really opened my eyes to what I could achieve.”

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Holly is currently recuperating from a hand injury she sustained in France during the Short Track Speed Skating ISU Star Class competition.

She said: “The sport can be dangerous but this is the first major accident I’ve had, and I’m determined not to let it stop me competing.”

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