ROSA KHUTOR, Russia, Feb 9 (Reuters) - Snowboarder Jenny Jones secured Britain’s first-ever Olympic medal on snow on Sunday when the 33-year-old took bronze in a nerve-shredding slopestyle final.
“It’s ridiculous! That’s me! That’s me! From Bristol!” a jubilant Jones told reporters when informed of her feat.
In a final of thrills and spills - including a helmet cracked in a heavy crash by Czech Sarka Pancochova - Jones, second on the start list, made a beautifully clean second run to move into the lead with a score of 87.25.
She then faced an agonising wait as she watched the next 10 competitors try to take it away from her.
American Jamie Anderson took gold with a mighty 95.25 with Finland’s Enni Rukajarvi was second on 92.50 but nobody else was able to dislodge Jones from her podium spot.
“It was so difficult waiting. I thought I did my best run and landed it as best as I could,” she said.
“With the course the way it was, I did my best run. It feels amazing. I cannot believe it, I just can’t believe it. I knew I was going to drop but I didn’t know how far. I am just so happy.”
All Britain’s previous Winter Olympic medals have come in events such as figure skating, bobsleigh and skeleton. Alain Baxter did win a bronze in the men’s slalom in the 2002 Games but he was later, controversially, stripped of the medal for a doping offence.
Reporting By Philip O'Connor