Four athletes with
connection to Western Australia have been confirmed on the Australian Olympic
Team for next month’s Winter Olympics in PyeongChang.
Lucas Mata will pilot
the two-man and four-man bobsleigh teams, where he will be joined by Italian
born, Perth based debutant David Mari.
Victorian Greta Small
will make her second Olympic appearance, with the 22 year-old set to compete
across the Super-G, Super Combined, Downhill, Giant Slalom and Slalom events in
a busy campaign in South Korea. Small is a
graduate of the WAIS individual athlete program having spent in time in Perth
during her school years.
WA will also have a
representative in the cross-country ski events, with 26 year-old Jessica Yeaton
selected on Olympic debut, where she will compete in the 30km Skiathlon,
Classic Sprint, 15km Freestyle and Team Sprint.
At 29, Mata will make
a second Olympic appearance in the green and gold having competed in Sochi in
2014. The qualified school teacher will on this occasion however, be piloting
the crews after switching roles following his debut in Russia.
His teammate Mari was
born in Milan and initially made a start in sport through gymnastics. It was
through Mata that the 22 year-old was introduced to bobsleigh and he made his
representative debut in the sport for his adopted country in 2015 at the North
Small’s road to
PyeongChang has seen the talent overcome an ACL injury sustained in late 2015.
Despite being just 22, she is a relative veteran in the Australian camp, having
carried the flag at the opening ceremony of the inaugural Winter Youth Olympic
Games in Austria in 2012, before making her senior Olympic debut in Sochi four
Perth born skier
Jessica Yeaton took up the sport as a 12 year-old whilst living in Anchorage,
Alaska and she holds a degree in Exercise
Science through Montana State University. Competing with Barbara Jezersek, the
pair made history for Australia last year, becoming the first Aussies to
qualify for the final of the Team Sprint at World Cup level.
Winter Olympics will run from February 9-25.
Greta SmallJessica Yeaton