YANQING, CHINA (AFP) – Canadian-born Kaillie Humphries said her Olympic gold for her adopted United States of American (USA) has a special place in her heart after storming to victory yesterday in the inaugural women’s monobob event to end Germany’s domination of the Winter Games ice track.
The 36-year-old was peerless at the Yanqing National Sliding Centre, building on her commanding overnight lead to clock four minutes and 19.27 seconds over the four heats.
Her winning margin of 1.54 seconds over her USA team-mate Elana Meyers Taylor, who took silver, is a huge gulf in a sport normally decided by tenths of a second.
“This will always hold a special place in my heart, my first for the USA,” said Humphries, the first woman to win Olympic bobsleigh medals for two nations.
Humphries won Olympic golds for Canada in the two-woman bobsleigh at both the Vancouver 2010 and Sochi 2014 Games, as well as a bronze four years ago in Pyeongchang.
However, she was only sworn in as a US citizen last December after switching allegiance following allegations she was verbally harassed by staff in the Canadian team.
Meyers Taylor, 37, wept when it was confirmed she would win a medal, having spent 10 days in isolation until last Wednesday after testing positive for COVID.
“I wanted to cry, I wanted to scream, I wanted to laugh – all the emotions just came out,” she said.