Stawell Gift runner Sarah Blizzard has made a switch in sport and will represent Australia in bobsledding.
The sprint runner will head overseas for the winter season to compete in a number of events, including a world cup.
Blizzard's athletics coach Matt Beckenham recommended her when he was approached in the search for a brake person.
"There are two people needed for women's bobsledding," Blizzard said.
"There's the pilot and the brake person.
"The pilot steers the sled. The brake person pushes like crazy, jumps in the back, holds on for the ride and pulls on the brakes at the end."
Jumping at the opportunity to try something new, the former Marian College student will team up with Bree Walker, also a past Stawell Gift runner.
"When I first met up with Bree she told me she had seen me run at the Stawell Gift," Blizzard said.
"She's been doing it for a few years now and was in need of a brake person coming into the season.
"It was around the beginning of July she reached out and now we're getting ready to head overseas in October."
Blizzard's training has changed from preparing for the running season to focus on "explosive power".
"At this time of year we would be normally doing a lot of speed endurance," she said.
"Now the distances I'm running are 30-40 metres. A lot of short sprints.
"It's really about the power over the first bit. You push for about 30 metres on the ice before you jump in."
Bobsled training facilities are limited in Australia, with no location available to do a practice run.
"The only training facilities out there are places which have hosted a Winter Olympics," she said.
"The first time I will go in a bobsled down the track is when I'm overseas. It's a little bit scary, but really exciting at the same time.
"I head over in October for five months."
Blizzard got the initial phone call about switching sports when she was training with her mother, Sue.
"We had just finished a training session and Mum was visiting me as we just started our new business venture," she said.
"She was surprised and when I called Dad he told me he hoped I said yes.
"Both my grandfathers are probably the most excited - they were thrilled when they found out."
Blizzard will miss most of the running season but said she would be returning for the Stawell Gift.
"When I was discussing the role with Bree she let me know I would be back to run in the Gift," she said.
"I don't know how I would go over the longer distance with the shorter distance training - but I know my starts will be amazing, I'll just have to make the most of those starts."
With a surname fitting for a Winter sport and hearing plenty of jokes from the movie Cool Runnings, Blizzard said she took it all in good fun.
"I've re-watched the movie since making the decision to switch sports and it brings back a lot of memories," she said.
"A lot of people can't believe it and have asked if it's real. It certainly is. We're on our way and between now and before I go we're looking for sponsorship and support to help us win some competitions and bring trophies back to Australia."
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