Bearsden ski club sees rise in skiers following Sochi Winter Olympics

Scottish Junior Curling Championships Feb 2009'lauren gray
Scottish Junior Curling Championships Feb 2009'lauren gray

The ‘Sochi effect’ and the

success of Team GB’s winter

olympians has inspired an avalanche of interest in snowsports.

Bearsden’s ski club has seen an upturn in interest following the Russian games, which came to a close on Sunday.

More and more peopple want to have a go for themselves following the success of homegrown slope stars.

There include 22 year old Lauren Gray, from Balfron, who secured bronze as part of the women’s curling team.

The West of Scotland Snowsport Centre, known locally as Bearsden ski club, has been one beneficiary of Lauren and co’s heroics.

Managers there have reported a marked increase in the numbers of people taking to the dry ski slopes.

General manager Gordon Scott said: “We have seen a lot more people coming here to either ski or snowboard.”

He said the ‘Sochi effect’ combined with a very good Scottish winter has given the ski centre a buzz: “It’s not just the young people who are coming here. It is across the board. We are running more adult classes than we normal do.

“It seems people are keen to learn to ski and snowboard at any age which I’d put it down to the Sochi effect and also the great conditions at the five resorts in Scotland at the moment.

“I would say the conditions are the best they have been since 2009 or 10 and this has encouraged people to try something they would otherwise maybe not consider.”

Meanwhile the popularity of curling looks set to be given a boost after Lauren’s team’s success at Sochi.

She took up curling when she was only eight years old and her first big opportunity came when she was selected for the Youth Olympic Games in 2009 and her curling career picked up when she won gold at those games.

After winning the World Championships with Eve Muirhead at the start of the year, Lauren completed her university degree over the summer.

On the same day she was formally selected for Sochi, she graduated with a 2:1 in English Literature and Politics from Glasgow University.

Lauren says her sporting heroes include Jessica Ennis and Andy Murray.

She likes these two Olympians because Ennis exuded skill and attitude throughout the London 2012 Olympics.

And she likes Murray because he grew up in a village close to her home town and has mastered his sport on the world and Olympic stage.

Mesnwhile, Bearsden Curling Club, which has been inexistence for more than 100 years, has said it is looking fornew members, perhaps inspired by Sochi.

Go to www.bearsden­curling­