Winter Olympics 2018: Ester Ledecka first woman to win gold in two different sports
Ledecka, from the Czech Republic, wins a gold on her snowboard after stunning the world on her skis
Remember Ester Ledecka? She's the Czech snowboarder that seeminglyto use Mikaela Shiffrin's skis and win the super-G, in one of the most absolutely insane races in Olympic history. Ledecka is still out there breaking records, winning the snowboard parallel giant slalom a week later. She is the first woman to win Winter Olympic golds in different sports. More than that, she's the third athlete to ever do so, and the first since 1932.
Ledecka's Winter Games have been somewhat of an adventure. She came to Pyeongchang to ski before swapping to snowboarding, where she's a world champion in parallel giant slalom. A rare breed of double threat, Ledecka proved that she could run with anyone in any discipline every time she strapped up. This was just the latest and greatest way she did so.
Ledecka's reaction after the super-G is absolutely priceless, and it pretty much summed up everyone trying to figure out who in the world took gold in it.
In a modern winter sports world where specialists are the norm, it makes this achievement even more insane.
Ledecka has long dominated the parallel giant slalom, mind you. She won gold at the world championships in 2015 and 2017. These have been her first Olympic medals, but she's certainly making them count.
Ledecka would have made history just by competing, as no woman has competed in both an alpine skiing event and a snowboarding event in the same Winter Games. The challenge of her switch was not lost on Ledecka.
"[People] were reminding me:`Yeah, you're a skier, you did a great success,"' she said, via CBC Olympics. `'Which was very nice but I was thinking `OK, but you have to change and be a snowboarder already."'
It doesn't look like the switch bothered her much after all. Although, according to her coach Justin Reiter, this shouldn't have happened.
"Oh, no, it's impossible," Reiter said on swapping back and forth. "You can go grab Teddy Ligety, go grab Lindsey Vonn, go grab Mikaela [Shiffrin], grab whoever you want, give `em two years and tell them to come out and race us, and we'll see what happens.
"What happened here was once-in-a-lifetime."
History actually backs that statement up. Eighty-six years certainly feels like a lifetime. There's something unique about this too. Winning two golds is one thing, but winning a gold medal on someone else's gear? That's the stuff that legends are made of. Ledecka might have just cemented herself as one with this feat.
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