MX23RW : Monday, December 9 02:34:27| >> :600:1482979:1482979:

Great Britain bobsleigh team finally receive Sochi 2014 bronze medals

Princess Anne presented the team with their medals.

Great Britain's four-man bobsleigh team have finally been awarded their Olympic bronze medals almost six years after the Russian doping scandal denied them a podium place in Sochi.

John Jackson, Joel Fearon, Bruce Tasker and Stuart Benson received the medals in a presentation from Princess Anne midway through a glittering British Olympic Association Ball in London.

It marked the culmination of a tortuous fight to receive what the team always believed was rightfully theirs, following the disqualification of two Russian crews that had finished above them.

Congrats @JohnJacksonGB @StuBensonGB @Bruce_Bobsleigh @JoelFearon6 👏

— Team GB (@TeamGB) November 21, 2019

The British quartet initially fifth after their four runs in Sochi, just 0.11 seconds off the podium, and had left the Russian city convinced their enormous efforts had not quite proved enough.

Fearon, the only member of the team who is still competing in the sport, admitted the emotion of the evening would not quite make up for the feeling of what they missed out on in Sochi.

Fearon told the PA news agency: "It's nice but we still missed out on all the amazing stuff that would have happened if we had got the medal out there.

Princess Anne giving the team their medals
Princess Anne giving the team their medals (Tess Derry/PA)

"We gave our lives for that opportunity and we went away thinking we weren't good enough, but it turns out we actually were.

"I have three boys now but at the time I only had my eldest, Simeon, who was four years old.

"He actually made me a medal when I got home and told me not to worry. It's great that I can show him a real one now."

For Jackson, who had fought back from a ruptured Achilles just eight months before the Games, and subsequently led the fight for justice, the frustration of the process also remains palpable.

"We were so sure we were going to win a medal in Sochi that we all our little bags packed at the top of the run with our podium kits in them, ready to change," recalled Jackson.

"Since then it's been such a rollercoaster of emotions. Even when we got the call from the BOA to say it was actually going to happen, I don't think I really believed it.

"We've still been going round schools and giving talks but it's hard to tell kids you're an Olympic medallist when you've got nothing to show them. Did I really feel like one until I got that medal round my neck? I don't think so."

The team after one of their runs in Sochi
The team after one of their runs in Sochi (Andrew Milligan/PA)

The ceremony was especially poignant for Tasker, who left Sochi having been identified as the natural replacement for Jackson, who announced his retirement immediately following the Games.

But Tasker, now 32, was forced to abandon plans to pilot the team at the Pyeongchang Games after suffering a minor stroke in January 2018.

Tasker said: "It's obviously a very emotional moment. For me this is the ending to our story. We had such a wonderful tale leading up to the Games, and it's a shame it's taken so long to write the final chapter."

Benson added: "We missed out in Sochi but we can't do anything about that now. We've got our medals in the best way possible, and hopefully that will send out a message that justice has been served."

body check tags ::

Click here for more stories about Great Britain

Share this article now:
Instagram - Follow Sports Mole
Mica McNeill pictured in February 2018
Read Next:
McNeill fights discrimination but won't stop career going downhill fast

Premier League
Scottish League Cup
La Liga
Serie A
Ligue 1
Primeira Liga
Turkish Super Lig
Belgian Pro League
Greek Superleague
Russian Premier League
Ukrainian Premier League
Swiss Super League
Danish Superliga
Segunda Division
Serie B
Argentine Primera Division
Liga MX Playoffs
Australian A-League
Women's Super League
European Champions Cup

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
Ultra close-up image of Kevin De Bruyne [NOT FOR USE IN ARTICLES]Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!