Snowboarder Enni Rukajärvi, 23, has finished second in women's slopestyle finals after receiving 92.25 points for her scintillating second run on the formidable slopestyle course. Her silver medal is the first medal won by Finnish athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, where slopestyle made its Olympic début.
Jamie Andersson of the United States emerged victorious with a score of 95.25 points, while Jenny Jones of Great Britain claimed bronze with 87.25 points.
After the flower ceremony, Rukajärvi was clearly taken aback by her medal-winning run. “I don't know how I did it. I hadn't practised the first and last tricks at all,” Rukajärvi revealed in an interview with YLE. “It was such a risky run.”
Rukajärvi also said that Andersson was a worthy winner, pointing out that she herself had made too many mistakes on the rails.
Pekka Koskela, the head coach of the Finnish snowboard team, was ecstatic over Rukajärvi's second run. “An absolutely brilliant performance – an incredible woman,” he lauded in an interview with YLE.
Rukajärvi's performance is made even more special by the fact that she has struggled with a knee injury in Sochi. She was, however, able to alleviate the symptoms with the help of physiotherapists.
Tero Hakola – HS
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
© HELSINGIN SANOMAT
Photo: Jussi Nukari / Lehtikuva