Snowboarder Katie Ormerod has high hopes for Pyeongchang Olympics

Great Britain?s Katie Ormerod pictured after practice for the women?s snowboard slopestyle at Phoenix Park ahead of the Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang.

Katie Ormerod hopes to soar through the South Korean skies to a place on the Winter Olympics podium.

The 20-year-old Brighouse snowboarder is at her first Olympics, but there is plenty of expectation on her after her World Cup and X-Games medals in recent seasons, in both Olympic events, slopestyle and Big Air.

Ormerod fractured a bone in her back in March 2017, but she made a rapid recovery and, rather than fear, her focus is on the rush from executing the acrobatic tricks.

“I didn’t let anything stop me coming to the Olympics,” Ormerod told Press Association Sport.

“Injuries happen. It’s so easy to get an injury. You just have to brush it off and get back on it.

“It is an extreme sport, so it can be quite scary sometimes, especially when you’re going over jumps as big as houses.

“You just have to put that fear to the back of your mind and just focus on the enjoyment and the good things, like the adrenaline.

“When you go over a jump it feels like you’re flying and you get this mad adrenaline rush.

“I just think about all the positives and don’t think about the negatives, because that’s when something bad might happen.”

Slopestyle qualification takes place on Sunday’s second day of the Games, with the final on Monday, while the Big Air event begins on February 19.

Slopestyle features rails and kickers, or jumps, on which the riders perform tricks, while the Big Air event comprises a single jump and one trick and is new for the 2018 Games in Pyeongchang.

Ormerod, who aged 16 became the first female to land a backside double cork 1080, is focused on completing the best runs she can.

And she hopes to emulate Jenny Jones, who in snowboard slopestyle in Sochi won Great Britain’s first Olympic medal on snow.

Ormerod was speaking at the Phoenix Snow Park, the venue for the slopestyle event, after the first training session, which provided an opportunity to assess the course and work out her routine.

She added: “It would be amazing to do what Jenny did and bring back a medal.

“I’ve always dreamed of getting an Olympic medal. I just have to do the best run I can do and hopefully it will be enough on the day.

“I’ve got more medals in Big Air, more World Cup medals, so I think most people would expect me to do better in that.

“But I got a slopestyle X-Games medal, which is really big as well. I don’t think I’m better at one or the other. I think I’ve got an equal chance in both.”

Ormerod narrowly missed qualification for Sochi, but her cousin Jamie Nicholls competed there and is a team-mate here.

“It feels amazing to be at my first Olympics,” she added.

“It’s nice to have a bit of family here. He’s been looking out for me.”

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