Cooper joins Camplin to mentor winter Olympic youth
6 July 2011
The Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) has ensured the athletes competing at the inaugural Youth Olympic Games will have the best mentoring imaginable.
2010 Olympic moguls skier Ramone Cooper was today officially appointed as a Young Ambassador for 1st Winter Youth Olympic Games (WYOG), Innsbruck 2012.
“I’m really excited and honoured to be working with the future of Australian winter sports and to help them learn about the Olympic ideals and values,” Cooper said of his appointment.
Cooper will be heavily involved with Australia’s outstanding junior winter athletes in their final preparations for Innsbruck 2012 where they are taking on 1,000 of the world’s best in January.
Australian Winter Youth Olympic Team (AWYOT) Chef de Mission Alisa Camplin, who was the Olympic aerial skiing champion in 2002 and bronze medallist in 2006, made the appointment.
“Selection for the WYOG Ambassador role was very competitive. Of the many passionate and skilled candidates, Ramone stood out for his long term aspirations within the Olympic Winter Sports Community and his dedication to the athlete development pathway,” Camplin explained.
“Ramone will be a great Ambassador for our winter Olympic youth. Not only has he experienced the highs and lows of being a regular winter Olympic athlete himself, but he also coaches and mentors many young athletes across the newer snow sport disciplines.
“Along with myself, Ramone will bring his own experiences as an athlete to the WYOG team. We aim to nurture and guide our future Olympic talent, creating an open and supportive team environment in Innsbruck.”
Cooper wishes there was a WYOG during his junior development.
“The Winter YOG is a benchmark event where you can test your ability and skills against the world’s best. It is a good opportunity for these emerging athletes to realise their potential and provide them with some experience to hopefully be successful in future Olympic Games.”
Cooper who retired after Vancouver 2010, finished his sports management studies and is now instrumental in the future of Australian winter sports in his role as the National Pathways Coordinator for Ski and Snowboard Australia.
“My experience as an athlete and my role with Ski and Snowboard Australia puts me in a position where I can help athletes prepare and mentor them on strategies to deal with the stresses of competition as big as the Youth Olympics. And the added pressures of media and their own expectations.”
Camplin is embracing her role to help the next generation of Australian stars.
“Leading the Australian Youth Olympic Team in Innsbruck is a great honour. I hope our athletes will come away with a positive experience that fuels their thirst for Olympic success on the biggest stage. We want our athletes to continue dreaming big!” Camplin said.
The Young Ambassador Programme is an International Olympic Committee initiative with only 30 Olympic Committees from around the world asked to participate.
The appointment of Cooper is timely as winter Olympic athletes have plenty to focus on in the future. The host city for the 2018 Winter Olympics will be announced early Thursday morning and on Tuesday the addition of new youth focused events such as ski and snowboard slopestyle were added to the Olympic program by the International Olympic Committee.
New events on the programme for Sochi 2014 will be contested at Innsbruck 2012, including slopestyle and ski jumping for women.
Australia expects to qualify 15-17 athletes across 11 disciplines and hopes the medal rush for winter sports will continue.
Selection announcements will be made over the coming months with the final Team announced in December.