29 October 2020

Born in Dresden (GER) in 2002, Jessica Degenhardt was 8 years old when she first started to practice luge. In 2014, she decided to pursue her sports goals in a more professional way by enrolling in the sport school in Altenberg where she could focus on both her education and her luge career. Only two years later, the decision proved to be the right one as she was selected to become a member of the national junior team and competed in her first World Cup.

Jessica earned the 2020 Winter Piotr Nurowski “Best European Young Athlete” Prize nomination after finishing 1st in the doubles and 2nd in the singles competition at the Winter Youth Olympic Games Lausanne 2020.

“I should win this prize because I want to show everyone out there that if you find the one thing that makes you feel passionate, you can reach every goal you want. I’ve asked myself several times why I do luge. I thought about it a lot and I realised there is no answer. I just do what I do. I feel good while doing it,” says Jessica when asked why she thinks she deserves this year’s prize.

“I don’t only love the sport itself, I also love everything around it. I have a great team of mates, coaches, mechanics, physiotherapists, friends and, especially, I have my family. I always feel welcome and comfortable when I have them around. And when you have a group like that, you just keep going.”

After a respectable 11th-place finish at her first senior World Cup event, Jessica now has her sights set on the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022.

“I am ready for everything that’s coming and excited to get new experiences, memories and challenges. I think I can consider myself more than lucky to do a sport that I love more than anything else in the world and to share this passion with the people I love.”

Get to know Jessica better by watching this video!