Olympian medalist is guest speaker at the Bentley school banquet

A banquet for the participants of the Bentley school who hosted ASAA Tier 2 Team Handball Provincials was staged

Special guest speaker at a banquet held in conjunction with the provincial handball tournament hosted by Bentley School was Olympic bobsleigh medalist Lyndon Rush.

A banquet for the participants of the Bentley school who hosted ASAA Tier 2 Team Handball Provincials was staged on April 24 at the Blindman Valley Ag Centre.

MC for the evening was CKGY radio station program director Tim Day.

School principal Lane Moore welcomed everyone. Assistant principal Stephen Lush offered a prayer and the closing remarks.

Dignitaries were in attendance including ASAA executive director John Paton, Wolf Creek School Division assistant superintendent Gerry Varty, Bentley Mayor Lynda Petten, and Ward 4 school trustee Pamela Hansen.

Special guest speaker was Olympic bobsleigh medalist Lyndon Rush, born in small town Humboldt Saskatchewan, who moved to Calgary to train while with the bobsleigh teams, now from Sylvan Lake. He explained how he went from a University of Saskatoon (football) linebacker to a bobsleigh driver. “I had pulled a hamstring so couldn’t be a pusher so they (recruiters) asked me if I would like to drive and after trying it I liked it. He had been involved in Moto cross and other sports and loved the speed and adrenaline rush. He found that in bobsleigh, too.

He told of his first runs and of crashing and how it felt.

He talked of the 2010 Olympic Games and the expectations placed on the team. “We were a favorite. I was overhyped on our first run with the home (Vancouver) advantage and everybody was cheering for us. I was peaked mentally. I was peaked physically. I was going for the win.” Then he explained how after crashing he had a spiritual moment as he was lying in the sled upside down feeling sorry for himself. By finding a “place of joy” he said he was able to handle the following interview and the four-man race still to come.

He said you need to be thankful for what you have and hoped his message to the young people was “Be a balanced person. There is some sort of spiritual side in everyone.”

Rush has done more speaking engagements since winning the medal in Vancouver and had brought along the bronze medal the four-man team had won at Vancouver to share with everyone. He has retired from competitive bobsleigh since Sochi and is now selling real estate.

Bob Ronnie Catering said they were set to serve 260 people with big appetites and there was indeed lots of food to spare.