Northamptonshire company's role in skeleton suit at Winter Olympics downplayed by boss

Lizzy Yarnold successfully defended her Olympic skeleton title last week. (Picture: David Davies/PA Wire)
Lizzy Yarnold successfully defended her Olympic skeleton title last week. (Picture: David Davies/PA Wire)

The managing director of the Northamptonshire company said to be behind Team GB's skeleton team's outfits has downplayed the role of his firm in their success.

Dr Rob Lewis OBE explained that TotalSim, based in Brackley, had not been directly involved with UK Sport for the last two Olympic games in Sochi and Rio.

Dr Rob Lewis OBE. (Picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

Dr Rob Lewis OBE. (Picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

But, given the firm's past success in designing Team GB's Olympic cycling's suits, it was possible some of the techniques may have been used by the English Institute of Sport when creating the Winter Olympic outfits.

"I got all the credit but it wasn't me," said Dr Lewis.

TotalSim received a lot of media attention after questions were raised about the legality of the athletes' suits in light of the British team's improved performances in practice runs.

Because the Team GB members do not wear the same suits during the regular season, their times were boosted when competing for their country.

For example, Lizzy Yarnold, who defended her Olympic crown in PyeonChang this week, was ranked seventh in the World Cup standings and produced the third and fourth fastest times in practice, with fellow Brit and now bronze medallist Laura Deas posting the first and second fastest times.

As a result of such improvements, it was, according to Dr Lewis, only normal for other countries to raise their eyebrows and question Team GB's equipment.

"The person that's winning gets the most scrutiny," said Dr Lewis, who was awarded an OBE for services to sport in recognition of his contribution to the performance of British athletes’ performance over the last three Olympic campaigns.