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Ireen Wüst is first out athlete to win a medal in Pyeongchang

She came out as bisexual in 2009

Ireen Wüst is first out athlete to win a medal in Pyeongchang
Ireen Wüst. | Photo: Hans Splinter / Flickr

Ireen Wüst just became the first openly LGBTI athlete to win a medal at the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang.

The Dutch speed skater took home the silver medal in the women’s 3,000 meters. The gold medal went to team mate Carlijn Achtereekte, also from the Netherlands, who narrowly beat Wüst by 0.8 seconds.

Wüst came out as bisexual in October 2009.

She said after the race: ‘I just went for it,’ reports Reuters. ‘I think I had a really strong beginning of the race [and] I raced for the gold, not for silver or bronze.’

‘I went really well, only the last lap was really hard. In the end I was so close but it’s not good enough.

‘I have to be satisfied with the silver, although it hurts a little bit,’ she said.

Wüst first won a gold medal at the 2006 Winter Olympic Games in Turin in the same event.

She then won gold at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver at the 1,500 meters speed skating event. Then gold again at the 2014 Games in Sochi.

She was hoping to be the first Dutch athlete to get five Olympic gold medals. She’ll have another shot at this record on Monday at the 1,500 meter event.

Wüst is notable for having received a ‘cuddle’ from President Vladimir Putin in Russia.

Her partner, Letitia de Jong, is also a competitive speed skater.

See related articles:

Meet the LGBTI athletes competing at the Winter Olympics 2018

Adam Rippon and Gus Kenworthy: ‘We’re here, we’re queer’

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