Gold-medal tie in women’s downhill skiing an Olympic first

BY Sarah Corapi  February 12, 2014 at 12:57 PM EST
Switzerland's Dominique Gisin and Slovenia's Tina Maze share the gold medal in women's downhill skiing. Photo by Alain Grosclaude/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Switzerland’s Dominique Gisin and Slovenia’s Tina Maze share the gold medal in women’s downhill skiing. Photo by Alain Grosclaude/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Olympic history was made early Wednesday morning when two athletes tied for first place in the women’s downhill skiing finals at the Sochi, Russia, games. Dominique Gisin of Switzerland and Tina Maze of Slovenia each completed their runs with a time of 1 minute and 41.57 seconds, making them the first to ever tie for a gold medal in an Olympic Alpine skiing event.

Technically, there was an actual winner for the race. But with the standard practice of rounding to the hundredths of a second instead of to the 10,000th, Gisin and Maze’s times ended up identical. For the two skiers, though, sharing the gold is something to be proud of.

“I’m sure glad I’m going to share this gold with Tina,” said Gisin. “She’s such a great woman and one of the greatest athletes of our sport.”

In Maze’s view, the dual win sets this victory apart from the others.

“It’s even more interesting because it’s not a usual thing,” Maze said. “It’s something special.”

Lara Gut of Switzerland nabbed the bronze medal in the race. Julia Mancuso, a top American skier and pre-race favorite, placed eighth.

With the conclusion of women’s downhill skiing, other gold medal events to be on the lookout for today include men’s 1000m speed skating, pairs figure skating, and the women’s snowboarding halfpipe.