A BOBSLEIGH star is looking forward to a new challenge, after announcing she is pregnant.
Blackburn-born Paula Walker, who competed for Team GB at the Sochi winter Olympics, is expecting her first baby with fellow bobsleigh pilot John Jackson.
Paula, who is also a corporal with the Royal Signals, announced on Twitter she would be missing the next season and swapping training for nappies.
But the 28-year-old said she hoped to be back competing as soon as possible.
She said: “This is the right time for John and me to start a family.
“I do not think the news has sunk in yet. It is a new challenge.
“I am going to have to take time out, but the intentions are to come back after the birth.
“We will just have to see how it all pans out.”
Paula, who was the 2011 Junior World Champion, is due to give birth in November.
Her partner John, who already has three daughters, posted a picture of their baby’s scan on Twitter.
Paula said they hoped to find out if they were having a boy, or a girl, in around four weeks’ time.
The athlete said her family, who all live in Blackburn, were delighted with the news and that the child, when he or she arrives, would make her great-grandmother a great great-grandmother.
Paula said: “My mum will be popping down to Trowbridge, Wiltshire, where we live now as often as she can. She is over the moon. This will be her first grandchild.
“John will be continuing with sport and it will be interesting for me to watch it at home on the television with a baby on my knee.
“My phone has not stopped ringing and buzzing with messages on Facebook and Twitt-er. It has been really nice to have everybody’s supp- ort.”