Podiums for Team GB in New Zealand

The southern hemisphere season has seen some great early results for Team GB with podium results in both ski and snowboard events this week.

Ormerod scores silver on return

Despite being out of World Cup action for almost two years, Katie Ormerod rejoined the world’s elite as she as she competed in Cardrona, New Zealand at the weekend.

The 2019/20 Snowboard World Cup Big Air season started at the NZ resort with qualification taking place a day earlier than scheduled due to an ominous weather forecast.

In her first World Cup appearance in 629 days, Ormerod was third after the first run, then improved to second place with a backside 720 mute move scoring 83.75.

Katie Ormerod in Cardrona
Katie Ormerod (c) Chad-Bucholz

Bad weather, good result

The organisers were hopeful that they would be able to run the final on Saturday morning, but the conditions weren’t good enough to allow a competitive event to take place.

This meant the results from qualifying stood, leaving Ormerod to earn her seventh overall World Cup podium (six in big air, one in slopestyle).

Finnish veteran Enni Rukajvari took her fourth career World Cup victory to edge out Ormerod, while Norway’s two-time World Championship medallist Silje Norendal was third.

Katie Ormerod on the podium

“It couldn’t be a better way to start the season”

This result was the perfect birthday present for Ormerod who celebrated her 22nd birthday on Sunday.

“I’m so excited to come second in my first World Cup back since injury,” said Ormerod. “It was great to ride in such a high-level contest and I’m really happy with my riding.

“It couldn’t be a better way for me to start the season.”

Ormerod now draws even with Zoe Gillings-Brier and James ‘Woodsy’ Woods with seven top-three World Cup finishes, equal fifth on Britain’s all-time list.

The next Snowboard World Cup big air competition will take place in Italy in November.

Bronze for Zoe Atkin

Ormerod’s success was followed up on Wednesday with a 3rd place for Zoe Atkin in the Ski Halfpipe Finals, also held in Cardrona.

Zoe is the younger sister of Olympic medal winning Izzy Atkin, who picked up the bronze in the Ski Slopestyle at the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics.  

Still only 16 years old, Zoe is moving up the ranks quickly. A year ago, Atkin finished seventh in Halfpipe at the Junior World Championships in New Zealand, and went on to make her World Cup debut in December 2018.

That was the start of a breakthrough season during which she accumulated three Nor-Am victories, 13th place at the World Championships and a fifth-place finish at just her second ever World Cup.

Zoe Atkin on the podium

Congratulations to both and best of luck to all of our Team GB athletes for the forthcoming season!

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