Skeleton: Rudman eyes Olympics after Winterberg victory


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The Independent Online

Shelley Rudman hailed her World Cup skeleton win in Winterberg this weekend but said her main objective remains another medal at the Winter Olympics in Sochi in 2014.

Rudman saw off her nearest rivals by over a second to claim her first victory of the season, with her British team-mate Lizzy Yarnold fourth, and Kristan Bromley also coming fourth in the men's race.

"Everything just slotted into place on the day and it was a great result," said Rudman. "It is great to know there is nothing to be concerned about, and my form is definitely there."

Rudman, who won an Olympic silver medal in Turin in 2006, said she expected her World Cup results to suffer this season as she continues developing her sled ahead of the Sochi Games.

"It was bound to be a slow start to the year because we were using the North American leg to continue getting things together," she said. "But it's great to get back on the podium and it's nice to see British winter athletes, and ice athletes in particular, getting a lot more respect from the other nations."

Bromley said he was pleased with his fourth place: "The fact that I'm fighting for the podium having started the season with hamstring problems, I didn't think I would be in this position at this point."

In the bobsleigh, Paula Walker and Gillian Cooke crashed in training but came back to take 10th place in Winterberg. "Although we came 10th, I'm still kind of happy," said Walker. "This has never ever been a great track for me so top 10 in the world, I'll take that."

In the short-track speed skating World Cup in Shanghai, Elise Christie carried on her impressive run of form this season with a bronze in the first of two 1,000m races. The Scot also qualified for the second race, which is staged today, as she attempts to increase her lead at the top of the world rankings.

The men's 5,000m relay team of Paul Stanley, Jon Eley, Richard Shoebridge and Jack Whelbourne qualified for the A Final. The former world record-holders achieved the fourth fastest time, behind South Korea, Canada and Holland.

Zoe Gillings finished fifth in the snowboard cross at Montafon in Austria, the second World Cup race of the season, just missing out on a place in the four-person final.

In alpine skiing, Chemmy Alcott continued her comeback from a career-threatening injury with 34th place in the St Moritz Super-G, but she was less than three seconds behind the winner, Lindsey Vonn of the US.