Team USA’s Erin Jackson won the women’s 500m speed skating gold medal at the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics in a time of 37.04 on Sunday.
Jackson almost missed competing at the Olympics after she slipped during the qualifying trials. However, her teammate and friend Brittany Bowe gave up her own spot to ensure the world No. 1 was able to go to Beijing.
“I cried immediately, it was just a big release of emotion. A lot of shock, a lot of relief and a lot of happiness. I haven’t fully processed everything quite yet, but it just feels amazing.”
– Erin Jackson
Jackson, 29, is the first US woman to win a speed skating gold at the Olympics since Bonnie Blair did so in 1994. She is also the first black woman to win an individual medal in speed skating at the Olympics, according to Team USA.
She finished 0.08 seconds ahead of Japan’s Miho Takagi in second and 0.17 seconds ahead of the Russian Olympic Committee’s Angelina Golikova in third.