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KATIE ORMEROD CLOSE TO MAKING GB SPORTING HISTORY

The snowboarder has been on the World Cup podium in four successive events and is leading the slopestyle standings with one competition to go.

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The 22-year-old from Yorkshire has been in dazzling form this winter.

She is now on the brink of securing the snowboard slopestyle Crystal Globe and becoming the first British female to take a World Cup snowsports title.

Although Ormerod has not been on top of the podium this season, her consistent riding has earned her four medals in four successive slopestyle World Cups.

The latest came at the Calgary Snow Rodeo in Canada on Sunday, where she finished in third place.

Her first run in the final left her well outside the medal positions.

But she stomped her signature double wildcat on the final hit of her second run for a score of 68.71 which pushed her up onto the podium.

My🥉place run from Calgary! Definitely the best feeling double wildcat I’ve done! Fun times!! ✨

Posted by Katie Ormerod on Tuesday, 18 February 2020

She finished behind the home favourite and PyeongChang Winter Olympics silver medallist Laurie Blouin (1st) and Silje Norendal of Norway, who was returning from injury and came 2nd.

Ormerod now has 2600 FIS points with one slopestyle World Cup left to go in the season but Calgary winner Blouin has closed the gap to just 400 points.

katie Ormerod bronze

The Calgary medallists

The race for the Crystal Globe will go down the final event in Spindleruv Mlyn in the Czech Republic next month.

Ormerod will be guaranteed the Crystal Globe if she wins silver or gold, or if she simply betters the score of Blouin on the day.

The pressure is bound to be on for both women but, whatever happens, it’s clear that Ormerod has made a spectacular return to the sport after a long injury lay-off during which she had seven operations on her heel.

As well as the four slopestyle medals this season, she won big air silver in her first World Cup back from injury in Cardrona, New Zealand, last summer.

She is not only leading the slopestyle standings but is currently in second place in the overall Park & Pipe standings.

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The final snowboard slopestyle competition is on 20th-21st March.

Ormerod’s latest podium came two days after teammate Gus Kenworthy won gold in the ski halfpipe World Cup at Calgary.

Kenworthy joined GB Snowsport from the USA team in December.

Elsewhere, there were some good results for GB Snowsport athletes.

Rising star Mani Cooper got the first podium finishes of her career in the Nordic Combined discipline.

The 16-year-old was competing in the FIS Youth Cup for the first time.

The event consists of two days of 75m ski jumping and a 3km cross-country course.

Cooper was 3rd overall on the first day and 2nd on the second day.

Mani Cooper 2nd FIS Youth Cup Norway, Feb 2020

Mani Cooper (left) on the FIS Youth Cup podium

 I was thrilled to get second place in the FIS Nordic Combined event in Norway at the weekend,” she said.

“It was a great experience and has really boosted my confidence for future competitions.”

Mani Cooper recently became the first ever female British ski jumper at an Olympic Games when she competed at the Lausanne 2020 Youth Olympics.

In cross-country, the Ski Tour 2020 started in Östersund, Sweden, and Andrew Young got his best ever finish of 18th in the 15km classic pursuit.

The Ski Tour 2020 continues across five different locations between the border of Sweden and Norway with the final event on 23rd February.

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