Paralympic Winter Games
04 - 13 March

Zhang Mengqiu secures China's first Para Alpine Skiing gold ever

Chinese 19-year-old upsets French legend Marie Bochet to win the women's super-G standing 06 Mar 2022
Zhang Mengqiu reacts with joy after finishing her race in Beijing
Zhang Mengqiu reacts with joy after finishing her run at Beijing 2022
ⒸGetty Images

China landed their first-ever Para Alpine Skiing gold courtesy of Zhang Mengqiu on the second day of competition (6 March) at the Yangqing National Alpine Skiing Centre.

The 19-year-old seemed ecstatic as she crossed the finish line in 1:13.54 to win the women's super-G standing ahead of France's legend and eight-time Paralympic champion Marie Bochet (1:14.97), who had to settle for silver.

“I am so excited and I am so happy," said Zhang. She also admitted to being calm while waiting for the final results: "I was not nervous (in the waiting zone). I was neither nervous when I was doing the run.”

Zhang had taken silver in the downhill the day before. She said: "I felt a bit more relaxed (today). I think after I won a medal, I built more confidence in myself for future races.”

Bochet had a rough start on Saturday when she lost a ski and could not finish the downhill. But it was different this time. 

"So happy to be here and to make another race today. A bit exciting and maybe a bit scared. Happy with my skis and the silver medal."

Now that she has claimed a medal, Bochet admits she has taken some pressure off her shoulders. "Yes I think the Games will start today (laughs)."

Canadian Alana Ramsay (1:16.84) collected bronze. "It’s been a long time coming back from that [crashing in 2019], so winning a bronze medal here means the world," she said. 

"It means my dedication to the sport is paying off."