Kelso’s Georgina on the verge of qualifying for world biathlon

Georgina Kelly.
Georgina Kelly.

Borders servicewoman Georgina Kelly is ‘at attention’ in an arduous sporting competition featuring army regiments in Europe.

The outdoor biathlete from Kelso is poised to find out whether she and her teammates will qualify for a world Nordic skiing and shooting championship in Germany.

Georgina (24) has already bagged a pair of gold medals in individual and team events during competition in Austria and France.

And, after more contests this week, she’ll find out if she’s to take her place in the finals alongside the very best military biathletes in the world.

The ex-Kelso High School pupil joined the military at 18 and currently serves with the 1st Royal Horse Artillery in Tidworth, Wiltshire. She works in military transport and also in the gym as a physical training instructor.

After joining she was offered the chance to take part in Nordic skiing, a physically punishing, fast, uphill version of the sport, and later combined it with shooting, where participants lie on their stomachs and test their marksmanship with long-range rifles.

This week, Georgina has been taking part against the best the army can offer, numbering 50 competitors and nine other regimental teams.

In Hochfilzin, Austria, she was part of the fastest female 5km relay squad and also had the quickest 10km individual race time, which earned her a brace of gold medals.

That combination of finishes put her and her comrades in a very strong position, ahead of the next series of events in France. The ladies once again were first in the relay, while Georgina finished fifth in the solo event.

More relay and individual contests today (Thursday) and tomorrow will decide if they progress in the next week or so to the final stage in Germany, known as ‘Exercise Rucksack’.

“It’s been so good – much better than being at work,” said Georgina. “The standard of competition is very steep but performances so far have been really good.”