New Zealand's new Olympic standout Nico Porteous has revealed he had to overcome debilitating nerves to claim a famous bronze medal at the Winter Games.

The 16-year-old Porteous became the country's youngest ever Olympic medallist, breaking Zoi Sadowski-Synnott's two-hour long record when he claimed bronze in the freeski halfpipe.

To get there though, he had to battle serious pre-race nerves before he hit the halfpipe.

"It was a tough day for me, I was very nervous at the top of the course, I actually vomited about three times before I was about to drop in," Porteous revealed to D'Arcy Waldegrave on Newstalk ZB.


However, the early nerves were long forgotten by his second run, which was highlighted by a leftside double cork 1440 – consisting of four full spins and two backflips – as he recorded a 94.8 score to briefly go into gold medal position.

While he was surpassed by Americans David Wise and Alex Ferreira for gold and silver, Porteous was good enough for bronze and is ecstatic at his accomplishment.

"I am absolutely over the moon – so proud to be a New Zealander right now, super happy with how I skied today."

"I just skied to my best ability and tried my hardest, I did some tricks which a lot of people have never seen me do before, but I've been working really hard in the last six months and trying to perfect those tricks. Today it worked and everything paid off."

Porteous had one of the best reactions of the entire Olympics when he saw his score of 94.8 flash up on the results screen.

Porteous almost fainted when he saw his score. Photo / Getty
Porteous almost fainted when he saw his score. Photo / Getty

With mouth agape and hands on head in shock, Porteous was clearly stunned - and overjoyed - at his performance.

"I'm actually quite surprised I didn't pass out," Porteous laughed.

"That was insane to see that score come up on the board, I couldn't take that smile off my face the whole way up the chairlift.


"I don't know why people hide their emotions – everybody feels things, we're all human."

Porteous was so elated with his second run that he believed he couldn't top it on his third go, instead deciding to cruise down the halfpipe, performing no tricks.

"The last run I didn't have anything left in the bag," Porteous explained.

"I had surprised myself with how well I skied, I literally just didn't know what to do. I really hope I didn't come across as cocky by doing that."

It wasn't to matter, as he hung on for bronze and capped off a historic day for New Zealand.