Michelle Gisin Wins Alpine Combined Gold in Beijing
Michelle Gisin Wins takes gold today in the last individual race at the Beijing 2022 Winter Games. Switzerland celebrates a 1-2 podium with Gisin ahead of Wendy Holdener.
The winner of the Alpine Combined gold in 2018 was in 12th place after the first run and became faster and faster in the Slalom run, to finally cross the finish line as the winner.
Gisin won the bronze medal in the Super-G. In Pyeongchang, she also won with a clear lead over Mikaela Shiffrin and Holdener.
Gisin becomes the third athlete to win back-to-back alpine combined Olympic gold medals after Janica Kostelic (2002-2006) and Maria Hoefl-Riesch (2010-2014).
"Four years ago I did it with my Downhill and this time I did it with my slalom. It's a pity that Mikaela did not finish, I would love to have battled for gold with her.
I didn't think I could put a Slalom run together like this after these three weeks, it was so intense. I'm just over the moon about how I skied in this Slalom, because Downhill was really good, except for that big mistake on top which cost me a lot of time in the second and third sector", said Gisin.
Wendy Holdener finished second, 1.05 seconds off the pace, while Federica Brignone rounded out the podium, 1.85 out.
Wendy Holdener was bronze in the Alpine Combined in 2018. For the Swiss, it is the 5th Olympic medal overall, the 2nd in Beijing after Slalom bronze.
"I would say it was a pretty good Downhill run, even with a few mistakes, it didn't matter. A solid slalom. I didn't take enough risk for the win, because Michelle skied amazing, but it was also a special situation because I knew Mikaela was out, so not that easy", said Holdener.
"(This medal) means I'm one of the best Alpine Combined ladies, the girl who can ski all disciplines. It's amazing", she added.
After finishing 8th in the Downhill run, Italian Federica Brignone pushed hard to make up five places and finished 3rd after the Slalom. This is Brignone’s second medal in these Olympics after finishing 2nd in the women’s Giant Slalom.
"For sure there were not many racers today, but Gisin, gold, and Holdener, silver, were skiing great in Slalom. I had no chance with them, and I had not too much distance from Downhill to try for a better medal. I was lucky that Mikaela skied out. But this is skiing, this is sports. I just tried to ski my best but without taking too many risks", said Brignone.
The Swiss alpine skiers have thus cleared half of all gold medals in Beijing (Beat Feuz, Lara Gut-Behrami, Marco Odermatt, Corinne Suter, and Michelle Gisin). No ski nation has ever managed to win five gold medals at the same Winter Games. On Saturday in the team event, the Swiss team has the chance to even get a 6th gold.
Only 24 athletes started the slalom, 15 made it to the finish. As in the Giant slalom and the Slalom, Mikaela Shiffrin did not finish the race after being 5th in the Downhill run and left Beijing with no medals.
"I didn't make it to the finish again and ... 60% of my DNF rate for my entire career has happened at this Olympic Games. That is what it is", said Shiffrin.