On this day in 2010: Amy Williams celebrates skeleton gold at Winter Olympics

PA Sport Staff
·2-min read

Amy Williams secured Britain’s first solo Winter Olympics gold for 30 years with victory in the women’s skeleton on this day in 2010.

The Bath slider broke her own track record on the way to Team GB’s only medal of the Vancouver Games in a time of three minutes 35.64 seconds.

Victory gave Great Britain a first individual Winter Olympic gold medallist since Robin Cousins at Lake Placid in 1980, with Williams becoming the first solo female winner since figure skater Jeannette Altwegg at the 1952 Oslo Games.

Great Britain’s Amy Williams crosses the line to win the Women’s Skeleton at Whistler Sliding Centre
Great Britain’s Amy Williams crosses the line to win the Women’s Skeleton at Whistler Sliding Centre (Andrew Milligan/PA)

She obliterated her rivals at Whistler Sliding Centre, finishing a remarkable 0.56secs ahead of second-placed Kerstin Szymkowiak, while another German, Anja Huber, took bronze.

“Never in a million years did I think I’d come here and win gold. I don’t think it will sink in for weeks and weeks,” said Williams.

“I came out at the bottom and saw our performance director Andi Schmid smiling, so I thought it must be good.

“It’s amazing to do this for my country. I had nothing to lose here and I just went for it. I enjoyed every minute.”

Great Britain’s Amy Williams, left, shows her gold medal to her mum Jan and dad Ian
Great Britain’s Amy Williams (left) shows her gold medal to her mum Jan and dad Ian (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Williams, then aged 27, shrugged off fuss surrounding the design of her headgear as she capitalised on a 0.30-second overnight lead.

A Canadian complaint about the aerodynamics of her helmet was rejected by the International Bobsleigh and Tobogganing Federation after an earlier protest from the United States was also dismissed.

Her GB team-mate Shelley Rudman, who claimed silver in Turin four years earlier, finished sixth, while Canada’s pre-race favourite Mellisa Hollingsworth had to settle for fifth.