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Sabrina Wanjiku pulls out of Winter Olympics, blasts Nock

Kenyan skier Sabrina Wanjiku Simander says she’s disappointed to miss out on the Winter Olympics set for Beijing.

In a lengthy post  on social media, the athlete described her withdrawal as a broken dream.

She wrote: Ski racing is my destiny and biggest dream. Dreams also have the vert dark flipside of disappointments and broken dreams. I’m not able to represent Kenya at the Olympic Games in Beijing.”

The athlete also revealed she’d opted out owing to financial constraints.

“In July 2021, I was in Kenya to visit my family, to organize & plan with the @officialteamkenya . They promised me to finance my team in the preparation season especially the speed camps, which is my main discipline. Unfortunately, I‘ve never trained it in the preparation seasons before, only some super-g, but never on World Cup level slopes. Without a budget, we can’t afford a speed training camp. We only had the opportunity to train giant slalom & some super-g on @hintertuxergletscher which is also one of my sponsors,” she explained.

“We discussed several times with the National Olympic Committee of Kenya (Nock) on the support which they promised to finance, they transferred a small amount which covered the depts. They encouraged me to keep training & wait for the government’s budget, but nothing happened.”

The athlete further lamented how frustrating it has been for her to keep worrying about finances and travel logistics whilst training and focusing on her preparation day in day out. “This is a very unfair strategy for me as an athlete & my team who works 100% to enable me to race at the FIS, Europacups, Worldcups, Worldchampioships & Olympics. In the end, we pay for the preparation by ourselves(supported by my sponsors). It’s very challenging to manage and keep the balance of being an athlete & organizer, during competitions my mind should focus on the races,” she shared.

The Olympic games,  set for Beijing between February 4 – 20, 2022 ,will debut seven new Olympic events include the Women’s Monobob, Men’s and Women’s Big Air (Freestyle Skiing), Mixed Team Snowboard Cross, Mixed Team Aerials, Mixed Team Short Track Relay, and Mixed Team Ski Jumping. In total, there will be 109 medal events across 15 sports.