10 February 2018

PyeongChang 2018 - Day 1 Review

SNOWBOARD: MEN’S SLOPESTYLE at Phoenix Snow Park

Team GB Results: Jamie Nicholls 16th, Billy Morgan 22nd, Rowan Coultas 33rd

A trio of British snowboarders took to Phoenix Snow Park earlier today however none were able to qualify for the final of the men’s slopestyle.

Jamie Nicholls became the first member of Team GB to compete in PyeongChang and sent down a solid first run which scored 71.56. He was unable to improve on that after taking a fall in the second run, ultimately finishing eighth in heat one, less than two points away from a place in his second Olympic final.

Nicholls was disappointed with not progressing but his Games aren’t over and he now looks to the big air competition next week (Wed 21 Feb).

“The whole practice and in the lead up to this, in training and stuff, I felt so confident. I was actually a bit gutted about my first run score to be honest,” said Nicholls.

"I was thinking mid 70s which was what I was hoping for, judging on what some of the other guys did. I thought my top section was really strong but obviously it wasn't to be. I'm looking forward to big air now."

Billy Morgan (56.40) and Rowan Coultas (23.58) rode in heat two, and while Morgan temporarily sat on the bubble in sixth during the first run, neither rider was able to progress with challenging wind conditions causing issues.

“On the second run I had so much headwind, there was just nothing I could do about it. I barely made it over the jump. It’s just a bad roll of the dice I guess,” said Morgan. “Hopefully we’ll be able to turn around some of the luck we’ve had today. I think we can all take it forward in the big air."

Coultas, competing in front of his parents and brother at his first Olympics, could not fault his preparation but will use the experience to focus on his next event.

"Coming into qualification I was really happy about my riding,” said Coultas. “My training went really well and I was just ready to do it in competition.

“Hopefully I'll take everything from the slopestyle and learn from it in the big air. It's my first Games and it's a good experience for me."

 

CROSS COUNTRY: LADIES’ SKIATHLON at Alpensia Cross Country Centre

Team GB Result: Annika Taylor 60th

Annika Taylor achieved a dream today by becoming an Olympian and will use her opening race as great experience going forward further into the Games.

Taylor finished 60th out of 61 starters in the skiathlon, but was part of an historic race with Norway’s Marit Bjoergen becoming the most decorated female Winter Olympian of all time, her silver taking her to 11 medals. The first gold medal of the Games was won by Sweden’s Charlotte Kalla with Krista Karmakoski (Finland) claiming the bronze.

After the race Taylor spoke of the pride in making it to her sport’s biggest stage, and while conditions were difficult today she is looking forward to the 10km free race on Thursday.

“It's such a special feeling competing at an Olympic Games and being called an Olympian,” she said. “There are not that many people who get that opportunity.

“The conditions were really good although there was a strong headwind that would hit you as you were coming back in. But we were prepared for that and knew it was going to happen.

“I hope that this race just blew the cobwebs away a little bit and I can go and enjoy that race [10km free] and fight back little bit.

“The event is something I've been really looking forward to all year, so I hope I can go out and deliver.”

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