The British Olympic Association (BOA) today announced that ice dance couple Nick Buckland and Penny Coomes have been officially selected for Team GB for the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games.
The journey to PyeongChang has not been straightforward for the ice dance pair. After a career-threatening injury in July 2016 which saw Coomes shatter her knee in eight places, the couple were only able to return to competition this summer.
This made it all the more impressive that the two-time Olympians secured their spot in PyeongChang by winning the Olympic qualifying competition at the 49th Nebelhorn Trophy in Obertsdorf, Germany, just months after returning to competition. In so doing, they also set a new personal best, accumulating 177.13 points overall.
They join the male and female curling teams already selected, bringing the total current Team GB size to 12.
Full athlete profiles can be found on www.teamgb.com:
• Nick Buckland (born: Nottingham, lives: New Jersey, USA/Nottingham) (Ice Dance)
• Penny Coomes (born: Maidenhead, lives: New Jersey, USA/Nottingham) (Ice Dance)
PyeongChang 2018 Team GB Chef de Mission Mike Hay said:
“This is a fantastic achievement for Penny and Nick. They have had to overcome more adversity than most in recent months, so to have qualified for their third Games they will be extremely proud.
“The dedication and effort shown to their sport should be commended and the opportunity to showcase their talents on the ultimate stage is one that’s richly deserved and I’m very pleased to welcome them to the team and look forward to working with them both, as well as Robin Cousins in the coming months ahead of PyeongChang 2018.”
Penny Coomes said:
“Qualifying for our third Olympic Games was made even more special as just over a year ago, we thought that dream had been taken away. After the hardest year of our career, we are grateful to have come back and skated two personal best performances that put us back in the mix with the best in the world. We would like to thank UK Sport and The National Lottery for providing us with the best treatment and support throughout the injury, we couldn’t have done it without them.”
Nick Buckland added:
“It’s very exciting to be named as part of Team GB again for a third time, it’s very special. There was always that bit of doubt about our return because we’ve spent so much time off with the injury but I think we can be right up there in PyeongChang and our performances in Germany showed that.
Team GB Figure Skating Team Leader and Olympic Champion Robin Cousins said:
“Nick and Penny overcame the nerves and excitement of returning to competition by performing two very strong programmes and securing their spot with Team GB in PyeongChang. They’re now looking forward to having more competition time in front of judges and audiences to hone the performance in the lead-up to the Games.”