Nicoll & Placide win first EC gold since 2017

Nicoll & Placide win first EC gold since 2017

Adele Nicoll and Kya Placide won British Bobsleigh’s first Europa Cup gold medal for seven seasons with success in St Moritz on Friday morning.

The Welsh pair took spot for the first time in their careers less than 24 hours after Nicoll secured silver in the monobob event at the same venue.

Nicoll, who was the reserve brakewoman for Team GB at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games in Beijing, only made the switch to the front seat in November of last season and had just four starts as a 2-woman pilot to her name prior to today’s race.

Placide is even newer to the sport having only joined the team this summer and experienced her first race day as recently as December.

Despite their inexperience, 27-year-old Nicoll and 19-year-old Placide recorded the fastest starts in both heats and led at every single one of the 12 timing splits across two runs in Switzerland.

They finished more than six tenths of a second clear of the Belgian team in second and a full second ahead of the Polish team in third.

No British crew had won gold on the Europa Cup circuit in any bobsleigh discipline since Nicoll’s former pilot, Mica McNeill, and Mica Moore took top spot in Winterberg in January 2017.

Fellow Brits Nikki McSweeney and Willa Gibb also enjoyed a memorable morning as they finished fourth of 14 sleds in the same race.

The result was the best on the EC circuit for both 35-year-old McSweeney and 20-year-old Gibb, with the latter making just her sixth start for Great Britain. They missed a medal by just four hundredths of a second.

Kya Adele Nikki Willa

Two British teams made the wider podium in St Moritz

Nicoll celebrated silver in the monobob discipline on Thursday as she missed top spot by 13 hundredths of a second having jumped up from fourth at halfway to second at the conclusion of the two runs.

In Friday’s 4-man action, John Stanbridge, Ben Riekstins, Callum Dixon and Josh Hudson finished ninth and Adam Baird, Ally Kay, Jens Hullah and Luka Williams placed 13th.

Stanbridge and Hullah were 8th; Baird and Williams 11th and Hudson and Kay 17th in a huge 2-man field on Thursday.