With it being Women’s Sport Week, British Canoeing caught up with slalom canoeist Eilidh Gibson on the recent developments in the sport, which will see the women’s C1 discipline being added to the Olympic Programme for Tokyo 2020.
The 21-year-old from Edinburgh, is part of sportscotland’s Young People’s Sport Panel, is encouraged by the recent addition of her event to the Olympic programme and believes it is great for the gender equality of the sport.
She said: “It is very exciting that C1 has been added to the Olympic Programme ahead of Tokyo in 2020. It is great to be part of a group of girls coming through, with the shared aim of the Olympic Games in 2020, which wasn’t there before.
“It is great as well to have our sport as gender equal, to encourage more young girls to get involved in the sport and to progress within it, knowing that there ares now two events at the Olympics for women. It certainly shows a huge development within the sport.
“In Scotland, I am part of sportscotland’s Young People’s Sport panel and I am actually working to encourage young girls to be part of sport, and you see this massive drop off.
With the changes made at the performance level, hopefully it will create more and more role models for young girls to be inspired by and hopefully they will stay involved in sport.– Eilidh Gibson
The Olympics is the pinnacle for Eilidh and 2020 is now the big aim for her. Final goals aren’t usually something that she tends to set, but as the 21-year-old has never been to the Olympics before, it is something she certainly wants to experience.
“2020 is the big aim and everything works back from that. I have one more year of University left at Edinburgh and then I will move down south and train full time at Lee Valley, which will be a big jump for me to get all the extra support. I am very excited for that and I will see how it goes from there.
“I have never been to the Olympics before. Obviously there are a lot more other races and other goals to be achieved, but for me the Olympics the big one.
“I don’t tend to put outcome goals on things, I have a process which I really want to try and work on and develop with my coach.
“I have recently started working with a new coach, Mark Delaney and we are building our race plans together, which will make me even stronger and I will hopefully get some good results from that.”