Putting his plans on ice
The Canberra Times
9th January 2003

Twenty-one-year-old Stuart Beckingham will be Canberra's sole representative at the World University Winter Games in Italy this month. Ranked 82 in the world in men's figure skating, Beckingham is aiming for a top-10 placement. "I'd love to say I could bring back the gold but it will be a tough field," he said.

The odds look good though, with him taking out third in the short program and fourth overall at the Australian National Ice-skating Championships in December. He started skating at the age of eight, and hopes to turn professional after he finishes competing. "I'd love to tour America and do some shows. "I enjoy figure skating because it's creative and physically demanding, and you're preforming in front of a crowd."

A student of Sports Administration and Law at the University of Canberra, Beckingham's schedule includes 21 hours of training, 25 hours of part-time work and 11 to 12 hours of university a week.

"I hang out with friends in my free time - but there's not a lot of it," he said. "But if you train really hard and keep a positive outlook, I believe you'll reap the rewards."