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Skier Ryding finishes 47th
11:20am Wednesday 24th February 2010 in Sport
DAVE Ryding has promised to pile on the pounds in a bid to become competitive after making his Winter Olympic debut in Whistler.
Ryding finished a distant 47th in the men’s giant slalom after making a major error when he smashed into a gate early in his second run.
He recovered from that major loss of momentum to finish strongly but admitted he was disappointed with his performance and worried about a heavy blow to his knee.
“After I fell over I skied really well but by then it was too late,” he said.
“I never expected to be here and challenging the top guys but I know I can ski a lot better than that, so it's a little disappointing.
“I’m still quite a small lad and I need to get down the gym and start bulking up. There is no reason why I can’t challenge with these guys in time.
“My endurance side of things is really good. I’ve also been putting the hours in to strengthen my legs and upper body.”
But Ryding acknowledges the gulf between the best of British and the best in the world is a gaping one, with his cause not helped by the decision of national governing body, SnowsportGB, to enter administration on the eve of these Games.
It leaves the 23-year old - who is nicknamed Rocket Ryding by this team-mates - needing to fund his remaining races this season - with the British Championships in Meribel the major post-Olympics target.
Noel Baxter, controversially overlooked in Ryding’s favour for Vancouver, will be itching to prove a point in the slalom while the Lancashire skier is keen to improve on last year’s breakthrough performance.
“I was joint first with Ed Drake in 2009, which was a bit of a shock, but there is no reason why I can’t do the same again,” he added.
“I had a bit of a disappointing January but things are picking up now and training here has gone really well.
“I’ve still got the slalom to come and that’s my focus, so my Games aren’t finished yet.
“Hopefully being here will be a springboard for the future, I won’t be at my peak for four or maybe even eight years.”
Lloyds TSB, proud partner of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and supporter of Team GB on their journey to Vancouver 2010. Visit LloydsTSB.com/London2012