Winter Youth Olympics: Freeskier Luca Harrington claims bronze medal for New Zealand

Wanaka teenager Luca Harrington has captured a freeski bronze medal at the Winter Youth Olympics at Lausanne, Switzerland - New Zealand's first individual medal at the event.

After leading qualifiers into the halfpipe final, the 15-year-old posted a best score of 80.66 points to finish behind Canadian Andrew Longino and American Hunter Carey on the podium.

Luka Harrington celebrates bronze medal at the Winter Youth Olympics
Luka Harrington celebrates bronze medal at the Winter Youth Olympics. Photo credit: Getty

"I got pretty nervous at the top of the halfpipe, but as soon as I dropped in, everything disappeared from my mind, except me, my skis and the pipe," he reflected afterwards.

"I'm so happy with how everything went today."

NZ teammate Max McDonald finished fourth, less than five points behind.

Harrington will contest the big air event on Thursday and has his sights set on the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.

"I'll be training every day until then."

New Zealand's previous Winter Youth Olympics medals came through the success of Katya Blong (gold) and Axel Ruski-Jones (bronze) in mixed-nation ice hockey.

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