Snowboarder Mentel wins Netherlands first Paralympic gold in Peyonchang

Bibian Mentel
Bibian Mentel . Photo: Allianz / Wikimedia Commons

Bibian Mentel won the Netherlands first gold medal at the Paralympic Winter Games in Peyonchang on Monday. She took gold in the snowboard cross. Silver also went to the Netherlands with Lisa Bunschoten coming in second place. Chris Vos also won silver in the men's snowboard cross, NU.nl reports.

Mentel was by far the fastest in the qualifying race, and therefore easily placed for the finals. In the final, Mental and Bunschoten fell, almost side by side, on one of the corners. Mentel scrambled to her feet and continued the race. Bunschoten sustained a large cut to her face and it took her a while longer to regain her feet. Although Mentel still looked back and hesitated a bit, she decided to continue the race and crossed the finish line first. Bunschoten won silver, despite her crash. 

Bunschoten was taken to hospital after the race to have the cut on her face treated, TeamNL said on Twitter.

The gold and silver for Mentel and Bunschoten were the first medals for the Netherlands this paralympic games. Mentel also won gold for the snowboard cross in Sochi four years ago, the only medal the Netherlands won during that Paralympic Winter Games.

Not much later, Chris Vos won the Netherlands' third medal in the men's snowboard cross. Vos crashed early in the race and ended in second place. Gold went to American Mike Schultz.

Vos, 20, is the first Dutch man ever to win a medal at the Paralympic Winter Games. 

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