Katie Ormerod taking leap towards Pyeongchang

Big Air: Brighouse snowboarder Katie Ormerod has come on leaps and bounds since missing the Sochi Olympics. (Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe)
Big Air: Brighouse snowboarder Katie Ormerod has come on leaps and bounds since missing the Sochi Olympics. (Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe)
0
Have your say

At the age of just 19, British snowboard star Katie Ormerod is already accustomed to making history.

Four years ago the Brighouse teenager became the youngest girl to land a double backflip on a snowboard, and the following year became the first female 
to land a backside double cork 1080.

But those achievements would pale into insignificance if Ormerod becomes the first Briton in history to win two medals at the same Winter Olympic Games.

There is a little over a year to go now to the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang and Ormerod – who finished inside the top three rankings in both slopestyle and big air disciplines last season – is already considered a major medal contender in both.

Ormerod said: “There might be a little over a year to go until Pyeongchang but it is already right at the forefront of my mind because it is the biggest competition out there.

“There is no doubt it will come around very quickly.

“Having missed out on Sochi because of a knee injury I can’t wait for the chance to go to my first Olympics.’’

Big air, a one-hit event in which snowboarders and skiers perform tricks off one particularly large jump, will make its Olympic debut in 2018 after its addition was confirmed by the International Olympic Committee last year.

Ormerod’s emergence encapsulates the success of the domestic freestyle programme, with Jenny Jones’ bronze medal in the Black Sea resort in 2014 securing vital funding and acting as inspiration for the next generation of British stars.

“Jenny was so inspiring to watch and coming from Britain where we have very little snow, it was great to see that we could still achieve podiums at the Winter Olympics,” added Ormerod.

“Since Sochi my career has really come on, I’ve got a lot stronger and grown in confidence.

“I got my first World Cup podium in big air last year and everything is really starting to come together.”

Ormerod, who learned to ski at the dry slope in Halifax from the age of five, has already finished third at the test event in Pyeongchang and second in Germany this winter.