Norway’s Therese Johaug won the 15-meter skiathlon on Saturday, winning the first gold medal of the Beijing Games.
Her margin of victory was the largest in women’s Olympic cross country history.
THE FIRST GOLD MEDAL of the 2022 #WinterOlympics goes to Norway!Therese Johaug wins the women's skiathlon! pic.twitter.com/HF7UadQY3D— NBC Olympics (@NBCOlympics) February 5, 2022
THE FIRST GOLD MEDAL of the 2022 #WinterOlympics goes to Norway!Therese Johaug wins the women's skiathlon! pic.twitter.com/HF7UadQY3D
She beat Russia’s Natalia Nepayaeva, the current overall World Cup leader, who earned silver. Teresa Stadlober of Austria took home bronze. The United States’ Jessie Diggins finished sixth.
The skiathlon is a mass-start race. It began with 7.5 kilometers of skiing, two laps around the 3.75-kilometer course. After those two laps, the racers switched to skate skis and did another two laps.
It’s Johaug’s first individual gold Olympic medal. A 10-time world champion, this is her third Olympics. In the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, she won gold with the 4×5 km relay. At the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, she won a bronze in the 10 km and silver in the 30 km. She finished fourth in the skiathlon in those Olympics.
It’s Neprayeva’s second Olympics after winning bronze in a relay race in Pyeongchang. Stadlober is competing in her third Winter Games and won her first medal.