Monday 19 February 2018

Daughter of IRA kidnap victim to represent Ireland in Rio

Saskia Tidey has switched her allegiances to Britain
Saskia Tidey has switched her allegiances to Britain

Ciara Treacy

The daughter of businessman and IRA kidnap victim Don Tidey, who is one of Ireland's medal hopefuls in this summer's Olympics, draws her inspiration to succeed from her "strong" father.

Although she was born after the kidnapping of the supermarket boss in 1983 - which culminated in the death of a soldier and a garda recruit - Saskia Tidey said she had "grown up with it" and counted her father as one of her idols.

With two weeks to go to her first event in Rio, she is determined to make him proud.

"He is a very strong person who has always encouraged me to do whatever I believed in doing," said Saskia (23).

"I'm so proud to go to the Olympics for him to see me. He has given me a huge insight into how to work as a team and what has been successful for him.

"He is a very keen sportsman at 81 - still running around and very active. That, to me, is a massive motivation. I'm very proud to be my Dad's daughter."

Saskia's parents joined her in Rio a few weeks ago to see the venue but will watch the games on TV from home.

She was speaking at the announcement of Team Ireland's six sailing athletes for the games, where she will compete alongside Andrea Brewster.

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