Winter Olympics 2014: Lizzy Yarnold provides GB boost ahead of Sochi Games with World Cup win

The Skeleton specialist is among GB's best hopes of a medal in Sochi

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The Independent Online

Lizzy Yarnold provided timely impetus to Britain's burgeoning hopes of a best-ever Winter Olympics next month in Sochi by claiming a fourth skeleton World Cup win of the season in Igls, Austria.

Yarnold underlined her status as one of Britain's leading medal prospects by making it seven podium places from seven World Cup races - she is firmly established as the world No 1 this season ahead of the American Noelle Pikus-Pace, who has won the other three races. With her lead now extended to 225 points, Yarnold only needs to complete the final race of the World Cup series in Konigsse, Germany next month to confirm her world No 1 ranking.

Yarnold's team-mate Shelley Rudman, the reigning world champion, finished fifth. The Winter Olympics begin on 7 February with the women's skeleton a week later. Britain have been set a medal target of three to seven medals - they last won three at a Games in 1936 and have never won more than four.