Australian Olympic Committee downplays ‘terror threats’

“We take every security threat seriously and have passed a copy of the document to the Australian Federal Police,” an AOC statement said.

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“However the IOC informs us, in this case it seems like the email sent to a number of National Olympic Committees contains no threat and appears to be a random message from a member of the public.”

Meanwhile, the AOC has announced a group of 56 athletes to represent Australia at the Sochi Winter Olympics, starting on February 7.

Countdown to Sochi 2014 Winter Games

It’s officially Australia’s biggest Winter Olympics team and by the conclusion of next month’s Games it may well be the most successful.

With another two athletes to come from alpine disciplines following appeals and an expected re-allocation of a quota spot in biathlon, the team may reach 59.

The team easily tops the 40-athlete squads from the past two Games.

Seventy per cent of Australia’s Sochi team will be competing at their first Winter Olympics.

Australia is eyeing off four to five medals, which would eclipse the three-medal haul in Vancouver four years ago.

Australia’s best medal hopes are expected to be Alex Pullin (snowboard cross), Lydia Lassila (freestyle aerials), Torah Bright (snowboard halfpipe and slopestyle) and Russ Henshaw (ski slopestyle) but there are a significant number of other athletes who regularly reach the podium at World Cup level.

David Morris, Laura Peel and Danielle Scott (freestyle aerials), Anna Segal (ski slopestyle), Jarryd Hughes (snowboard cross), Amy Sheehan (ski halfpipe) and Daniel Greig (long track speedskating) head that list while there is still hope moguls maestro and two-time Games medallist Dale Begg-Smith can get back on the podium after a lengthy competition absence.

Pullin, the two-time defending world champion, has brushed off concerns about a lack of competition this season, saying he is fit and ready to go.

But there are more concerns about 2011 world champion Segal who has struggled during the northern hemisphere winter.

Having carried a knee problem for much of last year, she has until February 2 to prove her fitness.

Similarly, ski cross athlete Scott Kneller, who crashed heavily in December and broke his back, has been given until February 10 to pass a medical clearance.

Two-time 400m hurdles world champion Jana Pittman will become the first Australian woman to represent her country in a summer and winter Games after being selected in the two-woman bobsleigh.

But Bright’s dream of becoming the first woman to qualify for three snowboard disciplines may be over with the 2010 halfpipe gold medallist sitting just outside the qualification zone for snowboard cross.

ALPINE SKIING

Dominic Demschar – Slalom, Giant Slalom

Ross Peraudo – Slalom, Giant Slalom

Greta Small – Downhill, Slalom, Giant Slalom, Super-G, Super

Combined

   

BOBSLEIGH

Duncan Harvey – 2-Man, 4-Man

Lucas Mata – 4-Man

Gareth Nichols – 4-Man

Jana Pittman – 2-Man Women

Astrid Radjenovic – 2-Man Women

Heath Spence – 2-Man, 4-Man

   

CROSS COUNTRY SKIING

Phil Bellingham – Sprint, Team Sprint, 15km Classic

Esther Bottomley – Sprint, 10km Classic

Aimee Watson – 10km Classic, Skiathlon, 30km Mass Start Free

Callum Watson – Sprint, Team Sprint, 15km Classic, Skiathlon,

50km Mass Start Free

   

FIGURE SKATING

Brooklee Han – Women

Brendan Kerry – Men

Greg Merriman – Ice Dancing

Danielle OBrien – Ice Dancing

   

FREESTYLE SKIING

Dale Begg-Smith – Moguls

Britt Cox – Moguls

Katya Crema – Ski Cross

Matt Graham – Moguls

Anton Grimus – Ski Cross

Sam Hall – Moguls

Russ Henshaw – Ski Slopestyle

Sami Kennedy-Sim – Ski Cross

#Scott Kneller – Ski Cross

Lydia Lassila – Aerials

David Morris – Aerials

Taylah O’Neill – Moguls

Jenny Owens – Ski Cross

Nicole Parks – Moguls

Laura Peel – Aerials

Danielle Scott – Aerials

+Anna Segal – Ski Slopestyle

Amy Sheehan – Ski Halfpipe

Brodie Summers – Moguls

Samantha Wells – Aerials

Davina Williams – Ski Halfpipe

   

LUGE

Alex Ferlazzo – Men

   

SHORT TRACK

Pierre Boda – 500m

Deanna Lockett – 1000m, 1500m

SKELETON

Lucy Chaffer – Women

John Farrow – Men

Michelle Steele – Women

   

SNOWBOARD

Cam Bolton – Snowboard Cross

Torah Bright – Halfpipe/Slopestyle

Belle Brockhoff – Snowboard Cross

Kent Callister – Halfpipe

Jarryd Hughes – Snowboard Cross

Scotty James – Halfpipe/Slopestyle

Nathan Johnstone – Halfpipe

Stephanie Magiros – Halfpipe

Alex Pullin – Snowboard Cross

Hannah Trigger – Halfpipe

SPEED SKATING

Daniel Greig – 500m, 1000m

* Two additional alpine athletes will be announced on Jan 29 following the outcome of an appeal before the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

# Subject to medical clearance by Feb 10.

+ Subject to medical clearance by Feb 2.

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