Sky Scholar and GB speedskater Elise Christie on risking everything to become world champion
By Mark Ashenden
Last Updated: 17/03/17 2:46pm
How would you react if you had just achieved one of your life's biggest dreams?
"Everyone keeps asking what I was feeling over the weekend. I just remember feeling really calm, and then at the end of the races just roaring, screaming in disbelief.
"I don't think anyone can write down in words the feeling of their dreams coming true."
The words of GB speedskater Elise Christie in Holland at the weekend. She smashed a 500m world record and won five golds in the first half of a stunning World Cup campaign but after a head injury few would have imagined her heroics in Rotterdam.
The 26-year-old from Livingston stormed to 1000 and 1500m gold and was overall champion at the World Championships. So what is it like making your biggest goals and what happens next?
Christie, supported as a Sky Academy Sports Scholar since 2013, reveals all....
World champion. It hasn't quite sunk in yet! After a really unlucky career, I can't really believe it's all worked out and my dream has come true!
To never be world champion and then become a triple world champion. It's just incredible!
This year I've really changed my approach to things. For those who saw me in Sochi at the 2014 Winter Olympics, they watched me throw away a bronze medal to try to win a gold one. Since that dreaded day I haven't been able to risk losing to win - I've played it safe and picked up medals.
But this year I decided that there was absolutely no point in picking up medals anymore, I had medals, but I wasn't a world champion. So all year I raced like a champion, I sacrificed to win. From 11 distance races, I have fallen once, got one penalty, broken a world record and won seven gold medals this season. I won no silvers and no bronzes - only gold.
My new aggressive attitude to racing without any fear of failure and full acceptance of losing had opened me up to the ability to be a champion.
I honestly can't believe this has happened, to make history with my team has been amazing and I'm so proud to have been a part of this team GB Short Track.
And I can't describe how thankful I am to everyone who has congratulated me and supported me.
Without continued support from my fans, the team, staff, everyone at Sky and the Sky Scholarships and UK Sport I could never have had my dreams come true!
So when someone asks what it's like to be a world champion, it's finally a feeling of satisfaction, a satisfaction that I've given back to all the people who have supported me, and to myself.
I can finally feel happy with what I've achieved. Of course I will continue to strive for more heading into the 2018 Winter Games in South Korea.
But I can now go into the Olympics knowing that no matter what, MY team and I are world champions. And I think that's kind of cool!