Short track speed skater Adam Hill was the only British athlete in action on Day One of the European Youth Olympic Games (22 March). Hill’s morning started well, with the Redditch-born skater safely advancing through to semi-finals of the men’s 1500m competition, finishing third in his heat in a time of 2:33:406.
He was unfortunate to not make it through to the B-Final as, despite a third place finish, he was deemed responsible for an incident that caused Bulgarian skater Stefan-Aleksandar Kyumyurdzhiev to crash out in the semi-final and subsequently disqualified from the race.
He returned on the second day of competition (23 March), showing his racing prowess to come 11th in the 500m.
Speaking to Team GB after his opening day penalty, Hill was content with his day’s work. Summing up his first performance, he said, “I was lucky enough to qualify through my first race – I finished third and the top three went through, so I was really happy that. I raced a good race tactically and did what me and my coach Billy (Simms) had planned.
“I did get a penalty in the semi-final, as I went to go around the outside of another skater (Stefan-Aleksandar Kyumyurdzhiev of Bulgaria) and unfortunately there was contact, which meant he fell and I was disqualified. Despite that, I actually finished third across the line and managed some good overtakes out there.
“It can be difficult to receive a penalty in bigger competitions, and even though I was unfortunate to get it, it’s still given me confidence. I’m still really proud of how I raced, I felt strong all the way through."