Sochi Winter Olympics sees visitor boom at Sunderland ski slope

Sunderland snowboarder  Adam Fucile at Silksworth Ski Slope
Sunderland snowboarder Adam Fucile at Silksworth Ski Slope
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A SPORTS centre is experiencing a flurry of fresh interest as Team GB’s Winter Olympics squad begins to scoop places on the podium.

Silksworth Snow Sports Centre has seen a rise in phone calls and bookings since Sunday when Jenny Jones won a bronze medal in the snowboard slopestyle.

The complex has a 165-metre flood-lit slope for recreational skiing and snowboarding available to visitors all year round to skiers and snowboarders, with two nursery slopes open to beginners.

James Myers, 16, from High Barnes, is among the enthusiasts who have been inspired to perfect their skills after watching the games in Sochi, Russia.

He said: “I have been snowboarding for two years after my mum booked a course for me and since then I have attended every Monday night for two hours.

“Jenny Jones’s success so far has given me more motivation to carry on and improve.

“She started on a dry slope herself and now she is an Olympic medallist, it makes you believe that you can go that far yourself.

“You can already see the Winter Olympics is attracting new interest because I have never seen so many snowboarders at the centre since I started going.”

An event is taking place next this Saturday at the Silksworth Lane complex for snowboarders, giving them the chance to take part in a session at a discounted price.

It is being used to bring in people who are interested in starting to snowboard because of the growing interest since the Winter Olympics began.

Adam Fucile, 17, also from High Barnes, said: “I saw the centre advertised three years ago and I have been going every week for two hours with a couple of friends since then.

“It is great to be involved in and it isn’t every day that you get the opportunity to snowboard.

“More people seem to be getting involved since the beginning of the Winter Olympics and that can only be a good thing for the sport and the centre in Silksworth.”

Snowboarding at the centre is available for all people over the age of seven and skiing for people over the age of four.

l The complex can be called on 554 5785 or 554 5793.