Wed, 18 May 2022

© Provided by Xinhua

Spain's ace female snowboarder Queralt Castellet looks forward to a "perfect" Winter Olympics in Beijing.

BARCELONA, Jan. 18 (Xinhua) -- Spanish snowboarder Queralt Castellet has told Xinhua in an interview that she is looking forward to a "perfect" Winter Olympic Games in Beijing, which are due to take place between February 4 and 20.

Castellet, Spain's most successful female snowboarder, is set to compete in her fifth Winter Olympic Games on the back of winning a bronze medal in the halfpipe event in this weekend's World Cup in Laax, Switzerland.

After skipping a World Cup event, the snowboarder from the city of Sabadell in northeastern Spain finished fourth in the overall standings which were topped by the Chinese snowboarder Cai Xuetong.

Yet with a bronze medal from the World Cup in Copper Mountain and a silver medal from the Dew Tour event in December, Castellet says that she goes to Beijing with her "expectations as high as possible" and full of enthusiasm.

"I was in Beijing a couple of years ago for the test event and it's very different from what we're used to, with really modern infrastructure, and I know they are working hard to make sure everything is perfect," Castellet said.

Now 32, Castellet's first Winter Olympic Games were in Turin in 2006, where she finished in 26th place. Sixteen years on, she goes to Beijing as one of Spain's best prospects for a medal and looking for that Olympic podium finish that has so far eluded her.

"I'm really looking forward to going there to experience the Games and make the most of the situation. It's such a special event that I'm really looking forward to going there to absorb as much as I can," she said.

In her preparations for the Beijing Games, Castellet says the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has meant she has had to "change mentality and adopt a philosophy of living for each day and being more aware of the possibilities each day brings."

© Provided by Xinhua

As far as the pandemic may affect the Games, Castellet says she is confident the organizers will have everything under control: "I'm sure they'll do a good job in Beijing because they really want to do everything possible to make sure these Games go ahead."

It now waits to be seen whether Castellet chooses to go to the X Games in the U.S. from January 21 to 23, given how close they are to the Beijing Winter Olympics, where she predicts "the level of competition will be extremely high."

Yet with 17 World Cup podiums behind her and in some of the best form of her career, the Spanish snowboarder insists that she is relishing the chance to compete at the highest level in the Beijing Games.

Castellet also had a message for snow sports fans in China. "I'm really looking forward to going there and we'll do everything we can to show off our sport at its highest level," she said.

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