Aussie Perrine wins second Games medal

Warren Barnsley
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PARA18 AUST

Australian Melissa Perrine has won a second Winter Paralympics bronze this time in the giant slalom

With the monkey off the back, Melissa Perrine now wins Winter Paralympic medals for fun.

The Australian alpine skier has reached her second podium in PyeongChang with bronze in the giant slalom on Wednesday, a day after the same result in the super-combined.

After promising results in Vancouver 2010, Perrine endured a nightmare Sochi campaign four years ago when she left with a fourth, three DNFs and a controversial disqualification for duct-taping an illegal sun visor to her helmet.

Her haul has rendered memories of her medal-less previous two campaigns forgotten.

"I'll take it," Perrine said.

"We went out there just to put two solid runs down and we finished the first run in a good place and we just tried to step it up a little bit in that run.

"I care about the skiing a lot more than I care about the medals. I'm so stoked the skiing was able to get me a medal, but I'm really happy with the skiing today.

"I just went out there to relax and have fun. I love this sport. I wanted to have a lot of fun out there today and I managed to do that."

The vision-impaired skier was third after Wednesday's first run and improved her second attempt by 1.9 seconds to hold off fourth by more than three seconds in 17-degree temperatures.

But the 30-year-old, alongside sighted guide and coach Christian Geiger, was narrowly edged for silver.

Her overall time of two minutes 28.81 seconds was 0.27 seconds off Great Britain's Menna Fitzpatrick, while Henrieta Farkasova clinched her fourth gold medal of the Games from as many events.

The Slovakian was 5.81 seconds ahead of Perrine in the same top three in the previous day's super-combined.

Perrine's medals followed Simon Patmore's snowboard cross gold to exceed the Australian count from Sochi 2014 (two bronze).

She follows in the footsteps of compatriot Jess Gallagher, who also won two bronze in Paralympic alpine skiing in Vancouver/Sochi.

Despite the warmth, Perrine said the course had held up.

"The course crew has done an amazing job to get it into ski-able condition. No complaints from me," she said.

Perrine was fifth in both the downhill and super-G at the start of the Games and will contest the slalom on Thursday.

Australia's seven other skiers on day five went medal-less, with Tori Pendergast (women's sitting) eighth and men's vision-impaired skiers Shaun Pianta and Patrick Jensen outside the top 10.

Three-time Paralympian Mitch Gourley's disappointing Games continued with an eighth in the men's standing, ahead of fellow Australian Jonty O'Callaghan in 23rd.

Men's sitting skiers Mark Soyer and Sam Tait were 17th and 18th respectively.