Switzerland’s Olivia Nobs has increased the country’s medal count to four by winning the bronze in the women’s snowboard cross.
The 27-year-old from La Chaux de Fonds in canton Neuchâtel survived a dramatic final round on Tuesday that gave Canadian Maelle Ricker the gold and French rider Deborah Anthonioz the silver.
During the final race of the medal round on Cypress Mountain, World Champion Helene Olafsen of Norway crashed early, placing Nobs behind Ricker and on pace to take the silver. But the Swiss then lost her balance as well and Anthonioz went zipping by.
Nobs quickly collected herself and a battle for the bronze ensued with Olafsen who had managed to get back into the race. Shortly before the last jump the Norwegian crashed again, leaving Nobs in the clear to take third.
American Lindsey Jacobellis, a favourite, went off course in the semifinal heat and never made it to the finals. Four years ago at the Winter Games in Torino, Jacobellis was moments away from winning the gold when she crashed doing a trick on the final jump.
Swiss snowboarder Tanja Frieden skirted past to win the event. She missed the Vancouver Olympics because of an injury.
Switzerland, at least for the moment, has the most gold medals of any nation at the Games with three. It now ranks fifth overall in the medal count behind Canada and its five medals. The US leads with eight medals, followed by France’s seven to Germany’s six.