Nathan Chen competes at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Thursday, Feb. 10, 2022, in Beijing. Chen and the rest of Team USA are now gold medal winners in the team event following a Russian doping decision against Kamila Valieva.
It’s finally official.
U.S. figure skaters have been honored with a gold medal for their stunning team performance nearly two years ago at the Beijing Olympics.
“The 2022 U.S. Figure Skating Team athletes have been awarded the gold medal in the team event at the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022,” Team USA posted on social media.
“Congratulations Evan Bates, Karen Chen, Nathan Chen, Madison Chock, Zachary Donohue, Brandon Frazier, Madison Hubbell, Alexa Knierim and Vincent Zhou!”
We are extremely proud of our 2022 Olympic champions – Nathan Chen, Vincent Zhou, Karen Chen, Alexa Knierim, Brandon Frazier, Madison Chock, Evan Bates, Madison Hubbell, Zachary Donohue – for their excellence on and off the ice. #MoreThanMedals pic.twitter.com/sysspfxjAT
— U.S. Figure Skating (@USFigureSkating) January 30, 2024
The honor — the first-ever team Olympic gold medal for the U.S. — was delayed because of a doping scandal involving Russian star skater Kamila Valieva.
She was allowed to compete in Beijing despite a prior test that showed she had used a cardiac medication that’s banned as a performance enhancing drug.
Her masterful skating helped elevate the Russian team to an apparent gold-medal victory, but a final ruling Monday by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) disqualified her performance.
In a statement posted online, the head of the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee Sarah Hirshland also confirmed that the International Olympic Committee had “awarded the gold medal” to nine U.S. skaters.
The U.S. figure skating team also posted congratulations, saying “We are extremely proud of our 2022 Olympic champions.”
In its ruling yesterday, CAS banned Valieva from the sport through the end of 2025 and disqualified all her performances dating back to December 2021.
Some of the American gold medal athletes plan to hold a press conference on Tuesday.
It’s not clear when a formal award ceremony will be held to honor U.S. skaters, as well as Japanese athletes now in line to win silver and Canadians expected to to win bronze.