British snowboarder Katie Ormerod is out of the 2018 Olympics after fracturing her heel. The 20-year-old from Yorkshire, who was among the favourites in both Big Air and Slopestyle but will now miss out on both, having suffered the injury while training on Thursday.
The British Olympic Association have confirmed that Ormerod will undergo surgery on Friday.
Dan Hunt, British Ski & Snowboard's performance director, told press: "Her determined and fearless nature will see her come back from this and reach the exciting potential and future that is ahead of her. Her team-mates will now be giving their all for her as well as their nation."
Katie had previously suffered a minor wrist fracture in practice on Wednesday but, despite that was still intending to compete in the Olympic Slopestyle event on Sunday.
This sad news will be particularly heartbreaking for Ormerod as she just narrowly missed out on making it to Sochi Olympics in 2014 with an injury. Speaking to Mpora recently, she discussed that setback: "I tried to go to the last Olympics in Sochi, but I was really unlucky and got a knee injury just before the games. Nothing went my way but now I’m really glad because now, going in to Pyeongchang, I know what to expect."
It's an indication of Katie Ormerod’s maturity that suggests that, while she may be reeling now, she will be back, fitter stronger, and hungrier than ever. And don't forget, at her age, she has at least two more Olympic cycles left.
At the 2018 Olympics Katie was set to compete in both the Slopestyle Event, which takes place on Sunday, and the Big Air which begins on Monday 19th. Ormerod represented one of Team GB’s brightest hopes for a skiing or snowboarding medal from the games.
"It would be a dream come true, if I get a medal, if not two." Katie said to Mpora. "That’s definitely my aim."
In 2014, at the age of just 16, Katie Ormerod beacame the first female snowboarder on the planet to land a Backside Double Cork 1080 – three full rotations with two off-axis flips, all while flying through the air. Last year, Ormerod became the first Briton ever to win a Slopestyle World Cup event, an accolade that added to the Bronze she won at the X Games in the same year.
"I’m quite a driven person and I’ve always wanted to go to the Olympics. I’ve always wanted to make it happen," she said. Unfortunately this is not to be her year, but there's no doubt in our minds that Katie Ormerod will be back.
All of us at Mpora are wishing Katie the swiftest of recoveries.