Three members of the 2013 British and Irish Lions squad took their training to new heights when they visited Austria last month.
Keeping calm under pressure will be key when the Lions face Australia later this summer and Owen Farrell, Jamie Roberts and George North all tested their ability to remain focused in the face of a number of challenges when they undertook a different type of training session at Red Bull’s Hangar Seven at Salzburg Airport.
Farrell, familiar with having to blank out the noise of 80,000 fans at Twickenham, calmly negotiated the distractions of a Nascar and an Alpha Jet before he came face to face with a Cobra Bell helicopter.
North, known for his electrifying pace and ability to quickly change direction off either foot took to the skies in a BO105 aerobatic helicopter, while Roberts, Player of the Series on the last Lions Tour in 2009, attempted to keep his cool in an Alpha Jet at speeds of over 500 mph.
Speaking about the challenge he faced, Farrell said:
I had never kicked in conditions like it. The wind swirling around my head and the fact a helicopter was hovering just over my shoulder, made it a real test to focus on what I needed to do. I had to raise my concentration levels to blank the distractions out. It was tough, but we got there in the end.
Find out how you can be part of a unique training session with Jamie Roberts.