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Winter Olympics: Who could win Great Britain’s record-breaking medal?

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Yarnold retains Olympic skeleton title
XXIII Olympic Winter Games
Venue: Pyeongchang, South Korea Dates: 9-25 February
Coverage: Watch live on BBC TV, Red Button, Connected TVs, BBC Sport website and mobile app. Full coverage times

Great Britain are just one medal away from reaching their greatest tally at a Winter Olympics.

UK Sport – which allocates funding for Olympic sports – predicted a total of between four and 10 medals, but set a target of at least five.

The funding for this Olympic and Paralympic cycle was in excess of £32m – more than double that for Sochi 2014.

Winter Olympics: Who could win Great Britain’s record-breaking medal?
Winter Olympics: Who could win Great Britain’s record-breaking medal?

After a slow start in Pyeongchang, Team GB have equalled their record of four – from Sochi, and Chamonix in 1924 – thanks to the efforts of skeleton sliders Lizzy Yarnold, Laura Deas and Dom Parsons, and slopestyle skier Izzy Atkin.

But who might take them to new heights?

First chance missed – James Woods

Woods came up agonisingly short of a medal in the ski slopestyle on Sunday, finishing in fourth – which GB chef de mission Mike Hay described as the “worst place you can be in an Olympic Games”.

Medal table
Will 2018 go down in Winter Olympics history? A fifth medal means Pyeongchang will be Team GB’s most successful Games ever, behind the four medals attained at Chamonix in 1924 and Sochi in 2014.

Dave Ryding (slalom skiing, Thursday 04:45-06:40 GMT)

Dave Ryding
Dave Ryding is competing in his third Olympic Games

In January 2017, Ryding matched Britain’s best alpine World Cup result by finishing second in the Kitzbuhel slalom in Austria.

The 31-year-old Lancastrian has been a regular top-10 finisher over the past 12 months but will have to be at his best to compete with the likes of Olympic giant slalom champion Marcel Hirscher, silver medallist Henrik Kristoffersen, and world silver medallist Manuel Feller.

“If I win a medal the popularity of British skiing would explode”, Ryding previously said.

Elise Christie (1,000m short-track speed skating final, Thursday 11:30-11:47 GMT)

Elise Christie
Elise Christie was disqualified from all three of her events at Sochi 2014

Could this be one of the all-time great comeback stories?

Having been disqualified from all three of her events in Sochi, Britain’s leading short-track speed skater has crashed out of her first two in Pyeongchang.

But this is Christie’s favourite event.

A foot injury may yet rule the 27-year-old out of the 1,000m, but if she makes it to the start line she will be more determined than ever to win her first Olympic medal.

Curling (men’s & women’s medal matches on Friday, Saturday & Sunday)

Eve Muirhead (right)
Eve Muirhead (right) will be hoping to lead her quartet to another Olympic medal

Britain’s women and men – led by Eve Muirhead and Kyle Smith respectively – have had mixed fortunes so far in the group stage.

The pool matches will be completed by Wednesday, with teams finishing in the top four progressing to the semi-finals.

Britain’s men won silver four years ago, while Muirhead’s team took bronze – they know how to deal with the pressure.

Men’s big air (Saturday, 01:00-02:45 GMT)

Snowboarders Billy Morgan and Jamie Nicholls will be competing for Britain.

Morgan, 28, was third in the World Cup in Oslo two years ago and is the more likely of the two to grab a medal.

Nicholls, 24, will be looking to make amends for crashing out of the slopestyle competition last week.

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Jamie Nicholls crashes out in second slopestyle qualification run

Men’s four-man bobsleigh (Sunday, 00:30-03:30 GMT)

Lamin Deen (right)
Lamin Deen (right) will pilot one of Great Britain’s teams in the four-man bob

Last November, pilot Lamin Deen, 36, secured the first major medal of his career with silver in the four-man event at the Bobsleigh World Cup.

That came a week after Brad Hall, 27, piloted a GB quartet to World Cup bronze – which, at the time, was the team’s best result in four years.

The two teams are strongly fancied to add to GB’s medal tally.

How big an achievement would it be?

More than £32m has been invested by UK Sport via National Lottery and government funding over the Pyeongchang cycle, more than double the investment for Sochi.

Before the Games, UK Sport director of performance Chelsea Warr said the medal target was “ambitious” and “particularly stretching” given the “high risks and low margins for error” in events across “unpredictable outdoor terrains”.

medal funding

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