Last weekend, 22-year-old Czech athlete Ester Ledecká became the darling of the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang after winning the gold medal in the Super-G alpine skiing event.
It was a surprise win not only because Ledecká was going up against world favorites like the USA’s Lindsey Vonn and the defending Olympic champ from Austria, Anna Veith, but because Ledecká isn’t even primarily a skier – she’s better known as a snowboarder.
But after NBC announcers had deemed Veith the gold medal winner and TV coverage cut to other events, Ledecká – on skis borrowed from American star Mikaela Shiffrin – skied down a shredded-slope after the top 20 contenders and narrowly nabbed the gold, one-hundredth of a second ahead of Veith’s silver medal time.
Today, Ledecká became the first Winter Olympic athlete to compete in both skiing and snowboarding events as she took part in the snowboarding parallel giant slalom.
This time, TV presenters did not make the same mistake.
And just like that, Ledecká has become the first female athlete in Winter Olympics history to win two gold medals in different sports, and cemented her status as the star of the Pyeongchang 2018 and a historic Olympic athlete for the Czech Republic.
Competing against Germany’s Selina Joerg in the final gold medal slalom run, Ledecká took an early lead and cruised to her historic victory.
“This is fantastic,” Ledecká told reporters after the historic run.
“It was something very special and I will think about this moment until the end of my life. I enjoyed every run and I’m very happy to be here and stand on the highest place on the podium.”
What’s next for the 22-year-old national hero? Fans might not have to wait four years for her next Olympics appearance.
In addition to skiing and snowboarding, Ledecká also happens to be an excellent windsurfer. And she just might compete in the sport at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.