British Airways

Snowing For Gold

Press Release   •   Jan 21, 2010 10:58 GMT

British Airways is gearing up to fly Team GB and Paralympics GB to Vancouver for the 21st Olympic Winter Games and Paralympic Winter Games, which start in February.

Among the 50 Team GB hopefuls is the UK's number one snowboarder Zoe Gillings, 24, the highest ranked snowboarder in Great Britain, and from Scotland the British snowboard half-pipe champion Ben Kilner, 21 - both sponsored by British Airways.    

Before departure, the athletes will be kitted out at BA's headquarters between January 18 - February 1 and plans are underway to fly their vital equipment out to Vancouver including 18 pairs of skis, 13 snowboards, five guns, four skeletons, two luges and an ice bath.

Willie Walsh, British Airways CEO said: "We are extremely proud to fly Team GB and Paralympics GB to the Vancouver Winter Games. We wish them every success on the slopes. This is an important milestone, ahead of the London 2012 Games and we are delighted to play a supporting role."

To get the athletes in the mood, the classic film 'Cool Runnings', about the Jamaica national bobsleigh team competing in the 1988 Winter Olympics Games, will be screened on-board.  A winter-warming menu of British classic dishes will be served including fish pie, lamb shanks and roasted fillet of beef with haggis - so that the athletes arrive ready and prepared to land jumps, master pirouettes and take on the snowy terrain.

British Airways operates daily flights to Canada including Halifax, Calgary, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto and Vancouver. Flights start at £489, and packages range from £619 - this sale offer is available until January 26, 2010.

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January 20, 2010                                              005/SA/10

Notes to editors
·     The Vancouver Winter Olympic Games are on February 12 - 28 and the Vancouver Winter Paralympic Games take place March 12 - 21.
·     Zoe Gillings, 24, from the Isle of Man is the UK's no. 1 snowboarder and 5th in the world in freestyle snowboarding. Zoe hopes to compete in the Ladies Snowboarding Cross at the Vancouver Winter Olympics on February 16, 2010.
·     Ben Kilner, 21, from Aberdeen, Scotland is one of the UK's best snowboarders - ranked 25th in the world. Ben plans to compete in the Men's half-pipe snowboarding at the Vancouver Winter Olympics on February 17, 2010.