Press

14 August 2017

WORLD ATHLETICS CHAMPIONSHIPS: SALLY PEARSON, 21st CENTURY GOLDEN GIRL

NICOLE JEFFERY, LONDON, The Australian,

She revealed earlier this year that she was pondering retirement until she took a plane trip and happened to watch a documentary on fellow Olympic gold medallist Lydia Lassila’s comeback after becoming a mother, The Will to Fly.

“I was blown away,’’ she said. “Then as I was walking out of the airport, I said, ‘Right, that’s it. I’ve made my decision. I’m going to get back into training and I’m going to coach myself’.’’

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14 August 2017

SALLY PEARSON CREDITS AERIAL SKIER LYDIA LASSILA AS KEY MOTIVATION FOR COMEBACK

Scott Gullan, Herald Sun – 14th August, 2017.

The acclaimed movie ‘The Will to Fly’ struck a chord with Pearson and triggered a series of events that ultimately led to her triumphant return in London.

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14 August 2017

LASSILA MOVIE INSPIRED SALLY PEARSON

SBS News, August 14th 2017.

Aerials skier Lydia Lassila provided Sally Pearson with the motivation to make big changes in her hurdling career.

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BBC – Sportshour. 17th February, 2017

Australian hurdler Sally Pearson was down and out.

Her Olympic title defence was over, she’d split from her coach, and she was seriously questioning her future in the sport – until she watched an inspirational movie on a plane from Sydney to the Gold Coast.

‘The Will to Fly’ tells the story of Olympic Champion Lydia Lassila’s journey of coming back from hardship to achieving her goals.

And Pearson tells Sportshour exactly how it put her back on track in her career.

 

28 January 2017

INSPIRING THE RETURN OF SALLY PEARSON

Scott Gullan, Herald Sun
Printed: January 28, 2017 8:00pm

“For the first time Pearson was genuinely questioning her future and she certainly didn’t expect to find any answers on a plane from Sydney to the Gold Coast. But one right click on the in-flight movie selection changed the Olympic hurdles champion’s mindset almost immediately.”

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18 January 2017

2 BIG WINS AT WHISTLER FILM FESTIVAL

The World Documentary Award sponsored by Super Channel was a tie between SLED DOGS directed by Fern Levitt and THE WILL TO FLY directed by Katie Bender and Leo Baker. The jury deliberated and had a hard time picking a winner but there was consensus on the top three films…

…In an unanimous decision, the judges have chosen “THE WILL TO FLY as the winner of this year’s Mountain Culture Award for the way in which it drew the audience into the subject matter, capturing trials and victories of athletic and psychological determination. It was obvious that the filmmakers clearly put absolutely everything into this film and the telling of Lydia’s emotional and personal story.”

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16 June 2016

ABC RADIO GOLD COAST

Mornings with Nicole Dyer
16 June 2016 , 12:41 PM

Lydia Lassila talks with Nicole Dyer of ABC Radio Gold Coast, talking about the Gold Coast premiere of The Will To Fly, following the announcement of a new world class training facility to be constructed in nearby Lennox Head, Northern New South Wales.

14 June 2016

AUSTRALIA’S WINTER OLYMPIC HOPES RAMPED UP

By Nicole Jeffrey
THE AUSTRALIAN 12:00AM JUNE 14, 2016

It has been 10 years in the making, but Australia’s Winter Olympic leaders finally have the green light to build a water ramp facility they believe will underpin future international success.

NSW Sports Minister Stuart Ayres will today announce the $10 million facility will be built at the Lake Ainsworth Sport and Recreation Centre at Lennox Head in subtropical northern NSW.

The godfather of Australian winter sport, Olympic Winter Institute chairman Geoff Henke, believes a screening of a documentary on Lassila’s preparation for the Sochi Winter Olympics, The Will to Fly, in the NSW parliament house this year achieved the breakthrough. Ayres and his office staff all attended, as did Treasury staff.

“That’s when they understood what it was all about,’’ Henke said.

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Simon Storey: Filmblerg.

Australians love sport. It’s a part of this nation’s character as indispensable as the ANZACs, casual racism and having a sausage in bread when you go to Bunnings on a weekend morning. Once a year a horse race stops the nation and our sporting heroes sit alongside military generals and politicians as the icons of this land – Sir Donald Bradman, Sir Douglas Mawson, Lionel Rose, Dawn Fraser, Rod Laver and Phar Lap. Think of Australia and you think of our sporting culture. What you’re less likely to think of is the Winter Olympics, after all who actually does think about the Winter Olympics except for Scandinavians and comedians looking for any easy target.

There are only a few mountains in the Alpine region that get regular snowfall each year (interesting fact though: the Snowy Mountains receive more snow each year than Switzerland gets as a whole) and yet with limited training facilities and only a few months of the year where the powder is good enough to ski on, Australia has produced in the last three decades one of the most successful women’s aerial skiing teams in the history of the sport. It is the only sport in which Australian women have won more Olympic medals than the female category of any other event, even with some fairly staggering injuries. It’s said that Australians at the Winter Olympics are like a Ferrari – they break down a lot, but boy do they look good and run smoothly…

15 March 2016

FROM ASPIRING GYMNAST TO OLYMPIC GOLD

Screen Australia: The Screen Blog. By Caris Bizzaca.
Posted 15th March 2016

With her history in women’s sport, aerial skier turned filmmaker Katie Bender became the perfect person to tell Lydia Lassila’s inspirational story.

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