ELLIOTT Bennett quit skiing last year but has returned to the sport with great success in recent months and rekindled his dreams of reaching the Winter Olympics.
The 18-year-old from Gawber has been skiing most of his life, representing his country and regularly competing across Europe.
He quit the sport last year, but returned six months later.
Elliot said: “My head wasn’t in it as much as I used to be so I did stop for a while.
“I worked for my dad as a mechanic at his bike shop.
“But after a few months I missed it and I found that hunger again.
“I took a step back and asked myself if it was really what I wanted to pursue, and it was.
“I made the mistake of setting myself a lot of goals which weren’t realistic and, when I didn’t achieve them, it was mentally tough to take.
“This season I am not doing that but just trying to work hard and have fun.”
Elliott has been competing in the International Ski Federation’s junior races across Europe, winning a race in Italy last month.
“I have been training a lot and I have races this week in Slovenia.
“The season has gone quite well but we’re not even halfway through it.
“I have taken steps in the right direction with my results.
“A lot of things are going a lot better than the last few years.”
Bennett will be watching the Winter Olympics in Beijing from next Friday, and hopes to be at the next one.
“I definitely want to get to the Winter Olympics.
“Hopefully in 2026 in Milan, I will be there, or even the ones after that.
“It just depends how I am skiing and how everyone else around me is skiing.
“It will be a massive challenge but that’s what I am aiming for.
“I will be watching from next week and wishing I was there.”
Bennett is hoping to compete in the European Youth Olympics in March in Finland.
“I would be one of the favourites to be chosen for that at the moment.
“That is my short-term goal but I try not to think about it too much.”
Elliott has been overseas since November.
“You get to see quite a lot of the world doing this sport which is nice.
“It’s difficult being away from home so much, because I am close with my family.
“But it’s not so hard when you’re doing something you really enjoy because it takes your mind off it.”