TORAH Bright has shown she has what it takes to become Australia's first dual medallist at a single Winter Olympics, the 26-year-old capturing third place in the slopestyle event at the snowboard world championships in Canada.
The Vancouver Games halfpipe gold medallist skipped her preferred event in Stoneham, Quebec, to concentrate on the new Olympic discipline of slopestyle, which will debut in Sochi, Russia, next year. And it paid off handsomely.
After high winds stymied the first day's action, the women riders were forced to qualify and run the final on the one day. In bitterly cold but clear and calm conditions, Bright performed her tricks with aplomb to finish with 77.50 points in the final. That put her third on the podium, behind Canada's Spencer O'Brien (93.25) and Switzerland's Sina Candrian (81.50).Bright was glad Friday's qualifiers were ultimately called off.
"I'm so happy that officials were happy to put on the qualifiers for us today because it was pretty dangerous yesterday. It all worked out and we got great conditions for the finals," she said.
The snowboard discipline of slopestyle sees competitors ride on a purpose-built course with jumps, rails and boxes, scoring points for the various manoeuvres they perform.
With the women's slopestyle final and halfpipe event two days apart at the Sochi Games, there is scope for athletes to compete in both disciplines. Dual success at the top echelons of the sport is not unheard of.
Two-time Winter Olympics gold medallist Shaun White has completed the halfpipe-slopestyle double twice at the prestigious X Games.