Sochi Winter Olympics: Day 10 Medal Predictions and Results
The United States had an historic day on Day 10 of the 2014 Winter Olympics, as Americans took gold for the first time in one event and earned a medal for the first time in 62 years in another sport.
Meryl Davis and Charlie White had their signature gold-medal moment at the Iceberg Skating Palace, delivering a strong free dance program to earn the first American gold in ice dancing.
The other history makers on the day were Steven Holcomb and Steven Langton, the driver and brakeman of the United States 1 sled in the two-man bobsled. The duo won bronze in the event to earn the United States its first two-man medal in 62 years.
The nation that won the most gold medals on Monday was Belarus, which took home two first-place finishes in biathlon and freestyle skiing.
One of those two medalists, Darya Domracheva, won her third individual gold of the Games after she dominated the women's 12.5-kilometer mass start in biathlon.
Russia also celebrated its fifth gold of the Games as the sled of Alexander Zubkov and Alexey Voevoda won the two-man bobsled.
Continue reading for complete recaps and full medal results from Day 10 in Sochi.
Men's Biathlon: 15-Kilometer Mass Start
UPDATE: Men's biathlon 15-kilometer mass start has been postponed once again, this time until Tuesday, due to dense fog in Sochi.
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Dense fog at the Laura Cross-Country Ski and Biathlon Center forced postponement of the men's 15-kilometer mass start event. Originally scheduled for Sunday, it will now be run Monday as long as the weather cooperates.
Norway's Emil Hegle Svendsen (pictured above) is the gold-medal favorite in the event, proving that his country's top athletes not only can ski fast but also can shoot straight.
Svendsen, 28, won two gold medals and one silver at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver. But none of those came in this discipline, where he hopes to prove his versatility and add to his overall Olympic legacy.
Svendsen may be the favorite to capture the gold, but he's just one of a handful of Norwegians expected to be in the mix for spots on the podium at the end of the day. Also expected to contend for medals on Norway's deep team are Ole Einar Bjoerndalen and Tarjei Boe, all of whom will have to fend off a strong challenge from the formidable Martin Fourcade of France.
If Bjoerndalen can medal, it will give him the record for Winter Games medals with 13. He won gold in the 10-kilometer sprint earlier in Sochi to tie the record but finished fourth and off the podium altogether in the later 12.5-kilometer pursuit in which Fourcade claimed gold.
Gold: Emil Hegle Svendsen, Norway
Silver: Martin Fourcade, France
Bronze: Ole Einar Bjoerndalen, Norway
Men's Snowboard: Cross
UPDATE: Men's snowboard cross has been postponed until Tuesday due to dense fog in Sochi.
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Australia's Alex Pullin is the favorite to win gold, but Nate Holland of the United States and others hope to have something to say about that in the men's snowboard cross.
Holland has won seven gold medals in the Winter X Games but is still seeking his first piece of hardware in what is his third Olympics. Now 35, he knows this likely is his last chance after finishing fourth in this event and just off the medal podium in the Vancouver Olympics in 2010.
Markus Schairer of Austria and Canada's Christopher Robanske also are among those who could grab a medal.
Gold: Alex Pullin, Australia
Silver: Nate Holland, United States
Bronze: Markus Schairer, Austria
Women's Biathlon: 12.5-Kilometer Mass Start
Darya Domracheva continued her dominance of the women's biathlon events in Sochi with her third gold medal of the Games in the women's 12.5-kilometer mass start event.
Domracheva finished the race in a time of 35:25.6, as she got out to a quick start on the skis and missed just one shot on the shooting range.
With her win, Domracheva earned the fourth overall gold medal at the Games for Belarus, with Alla Tsuper in women's aerials the other first-place finisher for the Eastern European nation.
Domracheva also became the first athlete at the 2014 Winter Olympics to win three gold medals. Nine athletes have earned two golds so far.
Gabriela Soukalova of the Czech Republic earned the silver medal in a time of 35:45.8 in a race where she chased Domracheva from the outset.
The race for third place was a fierce one, as Tiril Eckhoff of Norway beat out Germany's Evi Sachenbacher-Stehle by a single second.
The favorite heading into the event, Anastasiya Kuzmina of Slovakia, missed a total of five shots and ended up in 27th place.
Gold: Darya Domracheva (Belarus): 35:25.6
Silver: Gabriela Soukalova (Czech Republic): 35:45.8
Bronze: Tiril Eckhoff (Norway): 35:52.9
Last Updated by Joe Tansey.
Tora Berger seems to be one of the gold-medal favorites no matter what the women's biathlon event at Sochi.
But in these Winter Games, Darya Domracheva of Belarus has emerged as a fierce Olympic rival with which Berger and the rest of the field must contend in the biathlon arena. In fact, after winning a pair of golds already in Sochi (first in the 10-kilometer pursuit and then in the 15-kilometer individual race), Domracheva already has sent a doubly strong message that a changing of the guard at the top of the women's biathlon pecking order is happening before our eyes.
Berger, the pre-race favorite in the 15k, missed three targets in her first two shootings to take herself out of medal contention altogether in that event. She took the silver medal behind Domracheva in the pursuit and obviously is determined to finish ahead of her this time.
Also expected to contend for places on the podium are Germany's Andrea Henkel, Gabriela Soukalova of the Czech Republic, Switzerland's Selina Gasparin and Nadezhda Skardino of Belarus. Gasparin and Skardino took silver and bronze, respectively, in the earlier 15k won by Domracheva.
Gold: Tora Berger, Norway
Silver: Darya Domracheva, Belarus
Bronze: Andrea Henkel, Germany
Bobsled: Men's 2-Man
Celebrations took place all around the Sanki Sliding Center after the conclusion of the two-man bobsled event.
The Russia 1 sled driven by Alexander Zubkov set track records in Heats 1 and 3 on the way to the gold medal.
The combined time for Zubkov and his brakeman Alexey Voevoda was 3:45.39, a time that was 66-hundredths of a second better than the Swiss sled in second.
The gold was just the fifth of the Games for the host nation, who won gold on the ice in men's skeleton as well.
Beat Hefti and Alex Baumann took home silver in the Switzerland 1 sled in a combined time of 3:46.05.
The biggest celebrations may have come from the bronze-medal winners in the United States 1 sled, as Steven Holcomb and Steven Langton earned the first American two-man medal in 62 years.
The top American sled beat out Russia 2 by just three-hundredths of a second for bronze.
Gold: Russia 1 (Zubkov/Voeveda): 3:45.39
Silver: Switzerland 1 (Hefti/Baumann): 3:46.05
Bronze: United States 1 (Holcomb/Langton): 3:46.27
Last Updated by Joe Tansey.
They, as in the international Olympic community, say bobsleigh. We, as in America, say bobsled.
Whatever the case, it's always exciting in the Winter Games to see these shiny projectiles swoop down tricky courses at speeds approaching 100 miles per hour.
American driver Steven Holcomb is among the gold-medal favorites, but he'll have to buck history to do it. Although Holcomb led Team USA to gold in the four-man event in the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, the country hasn't struck gold in the two-man event in 78 years, dating back to the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, Germany.
He'll also have to catch teams from both Russia and Switzerland, who posted faster times over the first two qualifying runs held Sunday. Russia had the fastest time of 1:52.82, followed by Switzerland (1:53.14). Holcomb's U.S. team, one of three American squads entered in the event, clocked in at 1:53.18.
Holcomb is going against a host of other talented drivers, including Beat Hefti of Switzerland, Francesco Friedrich of Germany and Alexander Zubkov of Russia. But all three will need supreme efforts from their push athletes off the start line to get them on the fast track to the podium.
Silver: United States
Figure Skating: Mixed Ice Dance Free Dance
For the first time in Winter Olympic history, the United States have a pair of gold medalists in ice dancing.
Meryl Davis and Charlie White outdueled Canadian rivals Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir with a near-perfect free dance program at the Iceberg Skating Palace.
The Americans took down the Canadian duo by close to five points in the overall score department as they earned a combined score of 195.52, which is a new world record.
Davis and White earned the fifth gold of the Games for the United States as they fulfilled their lifelong goal of winning the gold medal at the Olympics.
The Russian pair of Elena Ilinykh and Nikita Katsalapov earned a standing ovation from their home fans, finishing in third place overall after earning a free dance score of 110.44.
Gold: Meryl Davis and Charlie White (United States): 195.52
Silver: Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir (Canada): 190.99
Bronze: Elena Ilinykh and Nikita Katsalapov (Russia): 183.48
Last Updated by Joe Tansey.
This appears almost certain to come down to one of two figure skating teams dueling it out for the gold: Meryl Davis and Charlie White of the United States vs. Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada.
Davis and White, the reigning Olympic silver medalists, rate as the solid favorites over the pair Philip Hersh of the Chicago Tribune called "their longtime frenemies," Virtue and Moir. Although the Canadians are the defending Olympic champions, the Americans have defeated them the last five times they've competed against each other. That included what Hersh described as "a whomping" that White said "sent a message" in the team event earlier in the Sochi Olympics.
The pattern continued Sunday in the short dance routines, as Virtue and Moir put together a stunning exhibition that earned them a score of 76.33 and put them in first place—but only until Davis and White performed their near-flawless routine that resulted in a score of 78.89. That gave Davis and White a commanding lead going into Monday's free skate, while they also broke their own record for the highest score ever recorded by an ice-dancing pair.
The catch in all this? Both teams train together and have the same coach, Marina Zueva. And she's Russian.
Speaking of Russians, they have two teams likely to be left battling for bronze: Elena Ilinykh and Nikita Katsalapov vs. Ekaterina Bobrova and Dmitri Soloviev. They were third and fifth, respectively, after short dance, sandwiched around France's Nathalie Pechalat and Fabian Bourzat in fourth.
Gold: Meryl Davis and Charlie White, United States
Silver: Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, Canada
Bronze: Elena Ilinykh and Nikita Katsalapov, Russia
Men's Freestyle Skiing: Aerials
Anton Kushnir of Belarus scored a big upset in the men's aerials competition as he beat two favored Chinese athletes in the final round of four.
Kushnir earned a final score of 134.50 to win the second gold of the day for Belarus.
The Chinese, who came in to the event in search of a medal sweep, only took home a bronze because of a few crashes in each round.
Jia Zongyang was the only Chinese athlete to win a medal, as he scored a 95.06 on his final jump.
Australia's David Morris brought home a surprise silver after his final-round jump earned a score of 110.41.
Mac Bohonnon of the United States missed the final four by one position, finishing fifth overall.
Gold: Anton Kushnir (Belarus): 134.50
Silver: David Morris (Australia): 110.41
Bronze: Jia Zongyang (China): 95.06
Last Updated by Joe Tansey.
It could be a Chinese sweep in the men's freestyle skiing aerials.
With the top three contenders for medals all from China—Zhongqing Liu, Guangpu Qi and Zongyang Jia—the best hope to prevent a Chinese sweep on the medal stand appears to be Anton Kushnir of Belarus.
Liu, 28, is the veteran of a relatively young Chinese team and is considered the favorite to capture gold. The former gymnast has the English nickname of "Big Boy" and is competing in his third Olympics, having won the bronze medal in this event in 2010 in Vancouver.
Gold: Zhongqing Liu, China
Silver: Guangpu Qi, China
Bronze: Zongyang Jia, China
Men's Ski Jumping: Team Large Hill
Germany ended Austria's dominance in the team ski jumping competition after Severin Freund delivered a massive final jump.
Freund teamed with Marinus Kraus, Andreas Wank and Andreas Wellinger to deny Austria its third consecutive gold in the event.
The gold was the third medal of its kind for Germany in ski jumping, while powerhouse Austria earned its second silver in the team event.
Japan, led by 41-year-old Noriaki Kasai, beat out Poland and Slovenia to earn the bronze.
Last Updated by Joe Tansey.
Austria and Germany appear to have the deepest rosters of quality ski jumpers, apparently giving them the advantage over the rest of the Olympic field in men's team large hill ski jumping.
Poland also is considered a contender to medal—even more so after Kamil Stoch edged out 41-year-old Noriaki Kasai of Japan for the gold medal in the individual large hill ski jump on Saturday. Peter Prevc won the bronze in that event and will lead Slovenia's effort to crash the podium party.
B/R Video: USA's Best Bets for Gold on Day 10
Check out Bleacher Report's take on Team USA's best bets for gold on Day 10.