Skating: Eley inspired as spotlight switches to No 1 Christie

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Great Britain short-track speed skater Jon Eley believes the world-beating performances of Scotland’s Elise Christie this season can inspire the rest of the team to achieve a new level of success.

Livingston-born Christie has swept all before her on the World Cup circuit with nine top-three finishes and heads into the season-ending World Championships in Hungary on 8 March as world No 1. Her success has turned much of the spotlight away from Eley, a two-times Oly-mpian who had grown used to receiving the bulk of what passed for his sport’s media attention.

Eley said: “You can’t really complain when someone on your team is world number one. Elise’s performances have got better over the last few years and you can see in the way she competes and in the way she trains just how much more confident she is in her own ability.

“Most of the guys on the team have known how good she is for years, and I think she has started to realise that and pushed in training to do what she needed to get to world number one. When you’ve got someone in your team doing that well it raises the performances of everyone else. We see what Elise has achieved and we believe there is no reason we shouldn’t become that good too.”

Eley will head into the World Championships after what he freely admits has been a mixed campaign, with a fifth place his best individual performance in a World Cup race in Montreal. He added: “It’s not been my best season and I’ve had a couple of setbacks to overcome. But I’ve got back to form in the last two World Cups.”

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