Friday, February 26, 2010
Sauerbreij wins Netherlands' fourth gold
ESPN.com news services
WEST VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- Nicolien Sauerbreij of the Netherlands has won the Olympic gold medal in women's parallel giant slalom, defeating Ekaterina Ilyukhina of Russia.
Sauerbreij made up a .02-second deficit after their first final-round heat to win by .23 on a sloppy, soaking course at Cypress Mountain on Friday.
She won the fourth gold medal of the Winter Olympics for the Netherlands and the first in snowboarding.
Austria's Marion Kreiner defeated Germany's Selina Joerg to win the bronze.
American Michelle Gorgone finished 14th after losing in the first round to Ilyukhina. After seemingly catching up with Ilyukhina, Gorgone was forced wide on the last hill and the Russian crossed the finish line first.
"It was just one of those things where you know she's there, and you're trying not to make any mistakes," she said. "And sometimes, when you're thinking yourself, 'Don't make any mistakes, she's right there,' of course you make a mistake."
Gorgone improved on her finish in Turin, where she was 22nd.
"There's no sport really like it," Gorgone said. "This is where snowboarding started. It's fun to watch when it's not pouring rain and gnarly conditions."
The Associated Press contributed to this story.