Powell and partner pipped to slalom gold
12:43 12 March 2014
Former Coopers pupil settles for second Paralympic silver
Caroline Powell admitted the unfamiliarity of having to race last in search of Winter Paralympic gold perhaps got to her and Jade Etherington as they settled for a second silver in Sochi.
Former Coopers pupil Powell, 19, guided visually impaired alpine skier Etherington into the lead at the halfway stage of the women’s individual slalom with a time of 1min 00.87secs good enough for a 0.55secs advantage.
But a superb second run from Russia’s Aleksandra Frantceva – the only skier to go under one minute in either slalom run in Rosa Khutor – saw her win by a margin of just 0.65 from GB’s Powell and Etherington.
With the running order reversed for the second run, the British pair were forced to ski last and Powell believes the deteriorating conditions may have been a factor in what was a tight margin of victory.
“We love slalom and we came out fighting. It’s a different race and a different course so your expectations change, especially when you have two runs as well,” said Powell, who has also won silver in the downhill and bronze in the super-G with Etherington.
“Our first run we did really well, our second run we did well also, but they [Russia] just did better.
“The first run and second run were very different. The first run we started right at the front and got the best piste we could.
“Visibility was really good as well for that but during the second run the visibility was not so good and it was a bumpier course because we’re going down seventh and it had been raced on. We did well, but we didn’t do well enough.”
Powell and Etherington are next in action on Friday where they will guarantee a fourth medal of the Sochi 2014 Games in the super combined by just completing the super-G element.
That is because there are only three competitors, including themselves, left in the competition with Frantceva holding a three-second advantage over the British duo in second place.
But, despite being presented with the choice of skiing easy to simply get a medal, Powell insists the duo will look to produce their best in search of gold.
“I’m loving it; the experience here has been amazing. I couldn’t ask for anything better – except a gold,” she added.
“We approach it [the second half of the super combined] the same way we approach any other race – go in to perform the best we can.
“And if that performance is good enough to win a gold, it’s good enough to win a gold and if it’s not, it’s not.”
*Sainsbury’s is a proud long-term supporter of the British Paralympic Association and a champion of inclusive sport for all.
For more information on Sainsbury’s commitment to inclusive sport visit: www.Sainsburys.co.uk/activekids.