Steamboat Springs Lots of people are congratulating Johnny Spillane these days, and not just because he brought home three silver medals from the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia.
Johnny and his wife, Hilary, learned a few weeks before the start of the Olympics that they were going to have a baby. It was welcome news for Johnny, who said it helped him put the Olympics in perspective long before he arrived at Whistler Olympic Park.
“There are things bigger in my life than what happens at the Olympics,” he said Wednesday evening. “This is so inspiring, and we are so excited about the news. It’s a very positive thing to think about, and it helped me realize that there is more to life than just performing well at the Olympics.”
The Spillanes are expecting the new arrival in September. Hilary said she is looking forward to becoming a mother.
“Oh, yeah, we are excited about it,” Hilary said. “This is going to change our lives, but it’s a change I think we are both looking forward to.”
Johnny said he has spent the past month adjusting to changes. He said things have been pretty busy since he won his first medal Feb. 14. He added another silver in the team event Feb. 23 and the final medal in his collection in the large hill event Feb. 25.
Since then, he has been on a nonstop media tour, talked to the president and had a chance to watch the gold medal hockey game last week.
Johnny Spillane said he was looking forward to traveling to the final World Cup of the season in Oslo, Norway, March 13 and 14. He said Oslo recently built a new jumping facility and that he is excited to give it a try.
The Nordic combined jumpers also plan to travel to Planica, Slovenia, March 18 to 24 for the Ski Flying World Championships. It will be the first time Spillane has taken part in the event, which is held on the biggest jump he’s competed on — HS215.
“Double the size of the big hill at Howelsen, and that would be close,” Spillane said. “The long jumps are around 240 meters.”
That’s roughly 100 meters more than the top Nordic combined athletes were jumping at the Vancouver Olympics — which was HS140.