'It's such a cool gold medal for all of us, it's so much fun'13 Mar 2022
CHAMPIONS ALL: Oksana Masters of United States (2-L), teammate Jake Adicoff, Sydney Peterson and Daniel Cnossen celebrate their win in the Para Cross-Country Skiing Mixed 4x2.5km Relay.
ⒸCarmen Mandato/Getty Images
By ND Prashant | For the IPC
Just when it looked like United States might go dry without a gold in the Cross-Country event at the Beijing 2022 Paralympic Games, their stalwarts delivered.
Oksana Masters, Sydney Peterson, Daniel Cnossen and Jake Adicoff put up a power-packed performance to clinch gold in the Mixed 4x2.5km Relay with a time of 25:59.3 seconds on the final day of the Beijing 2022 Games at the Zhangjiakou National Biathlon Centre.
Hosts China led by Yilin Shan, Chenyang Wang, Peng Zheng and Jiayun Cai settled for the second spot with 26:25.3 while Canada’s Collin Cameron, Emily Young, Mark Arendz and Natalie Wilkie(27:00.6) completed the podium.
US finished their engagements in Cross-Country with eight medals – one gold, six silvers and one bronze while China topped the standing with 18 medals (seven gold, six silver and five bronze). Canada was second on the medals tally with 10 medals (five gold, one silver, four bronze).
The US team gave it all in the final leg to move from the third place to the top and Adicoff reflecting on the contest said: “We were watching the jumbotron and watching our three teammates (Masters, Peterson and Cnossen) ski incredible leg after incredible leg.
"We knew that we (he and guide Sam Wood) were going to come into that last leg with a bit of a deficit to make up, that's just how the team is set up, but we thought it was going to be much larger and to get that 35-second back split we were just excited.
"We came out of the gate hot and just really sent it in the first half. It was just really easy after that and so much excitement out there that the skiing was fun and easy and fast. The team worked so hard to make that as short as possible so that we would have an easy work out there today, getting past those three teams out there, taking it home.
“It's such a cool gold medal for all of us, it's so much fun.”
China’s Shan hailed the team effort in the silver winning performance saying: “I’m very happy to win the silver medal. I’ve been looking forward to the relay for a long time. I’m satisfied with the result. We had a pretty good performance. And we will put in more efforts in the future.”
UKRAINE CLINCH OPEN MIXED 4x2.5km RELAY
Ukraine made up for missing out on the Mixed 4x2.5km relay podium earlier in the day by clinching gold in the Open Mixed 4x2.5km. With that, they finished their engagements in Cross-Country with seven medals – three gold, one silver and three bronze and occupy the third spot.
Their team comprising of Dmytro Suiarko, Grygorii Vovchynskyi, Vasyl Kravchuk and Anatolii Kovalevskyi finished the race with a time of 28:05.3. French team led by Benjamin Daviet and Anthony Chalencon picked up silver for their effort of 28:30.4, while Norway’s Kjartan Haugen, Vilde Nilisen and Thomas Oxaal ensured that hosts China was out of the podium place with an aggressive finish clocking 28:41.0.
"It means Ukraine, the whole country, is like one person. Today our whole winning team is like one guy. We have been talking to each other and said that we must do everything as one today.
"Vasyl said that, 'Today we are only fighting for the gold medal'. So everyone said today we must do it. And we did it," said a delighted Vovchynskyi.
CANDIAN LEGEND BRIAN MCKEEVER MISSES FEAT
Canadian legend Brian McKeever, in the last race of his illustrious career and eyeing the record 17th Paralympic title, teaming up with Brittany Hudak had to be content with the sixth spot.
Mckeever, who claimed three golds from four races he participated in, thus remained tied on 16 medals with German legendary Alpine skier Gerd Schenfelder.