Olympic Gold and Bronze medallist Lydia Lassila OAM is a legend in Australian sport and is looking to join the all-time world greats as a five-time Winter Olympian in PyeongChang, Korea in 2018.
As a teenage elite gymnast, Lydia was attracted to a athlete transfer program for Aerial Skiing and skied for the first time in 1998 at Mt Buller. She went on to place eighth at her first Olympic Winter Games just under four years later in Salt Lake City in 2002.
The ultimate prize of an Olympic Gold Medal came in 2010 in Vancouver after which she started her family with husband and former professional freestyle skier Lauri Lassila with the birth of their first son, Kai.
The desire to push the boundaries of her sport saw Lydia return for Sochi in 2014 and in the final jump she went for a quad-twisting triple somersault – a first for a woman in Aerial Skiing, which landed her an Olympic Bronze medal.
Between managing her business ‘Body Ice’ and giving birth to second son Alek in early 2015, Lydia was the subject of a movie-length documentary The Will To Fly chronicling her life and sport, which was released in 2016 to critical acclaim. The Will to Fly continues to be released internationally.
As a 35-year-old mother of two, Lydia returned to the snow for the 2016/17 season to chase her Olympic dream one more time and enjoyed a fairy-tale return by winning three World Cups in early 2017 in Deer Valley, Minsk and Moscow.
Apart from her 2010 Olympic Gold Medal in Vancouver and 2014 Bronze in Sochi, Lydia has competed in 81 Aerial Skiing World Cups and World Championships, capturing 35 podiums of which thirteen have been gold.
Lydia’s honours in the sport have included the following:
2017 Ski & Snowboard Australia ‘Outstanding Achievement Award”
2012 Order of Australia (OAM)
2010 Australian Institute of Sport 'Athlete of the Year'
2010 Australia Hall of Fame, 'The Don' Award
2010 Governor’s Award for the Victorian Sportsperson of the Year
2010 Victorian Female Athlete of the Year- Kitty McEwan Award
2010 Ski and Snowboard Australia Athlete of the Year
She holds a Bachelor of Applied Science (Human Movement) at RMIT (Melbourne, Australia)
Q & A
Proudest moment: Doing the quad twisting triple on snow
Best sporting memory from 2016/17 season: Some pretty fun snapchat moments with my teammates! Having a few wins was also fun.
I began my sport in 1999 because I was looking for a new challenge and wanted to be an athlete!
When I am not training or competing I am: Travelling, surfing and having fun with friends and family.
I enjoy my sport because it tests me in so many ways mentally and physically and it’s just so much fun.
Education: RMIT – Bachelor of App Science: Human Movement
Favourite international competition: Deer Valley, Utah
Favourite Food: Anything Asian
Favourite Music: Rock, Indie
Favourite other sport to watch or play : Love watching track and field, diving, gymnastics and anything snow related
My Heroes are Serena Williams, Federer, Nadal and many legends of the past like Nadia Comaneci, Pele, Ali.
Sponsors: Suzuki, Bolle, Lululemon
Childhood Ambition: To win Olympic Gold
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