On Sunday Romania won its first gold medal at the Youth Winter Olympics under way in Switzerland. On the bobsleigh track in St. Moritz, Georgeta Popescu won the girls’ monobob race in 2 minutes 26.84 seconds over 2 heats. The Romanian athlete was followed within a second by Viktoria Cernanska of Slovakia and Celine Harms of Germany, only 0.01 seconds from one another.
For this performance, we have designated Georgeta Popescu the Athlete of the Week on RRI.
The young Olympic gold winner was born in Campina, southern Romania, on April 13, 2002. She is a member of CSO Sinaia Sports Club, and coached by Cezar Popescu. She has won 2 national youth monobob titles so far in her career, and her record also includes a second place in the national 2-women senior championship alongside Teodora Vlad.
But her result in Switzerland is by far the best performance in Georgeta’s career so far, while also the first Romanian medal in women’s bobsleigh ever. The achievement is also a good omen for the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing, where monobob will be among the Olympic events.
We should also add that in the men’s monobob race at the Youth Winter Olympics in Switzerland, Romania picked up a second gold medal. After the 2 heats of the event, Andrei Nica came first with 2 minutes 24.80 seconds, and shared the gold with German Alexander Czudaj, who finished the run in the exact same time. The bronze went to Quentin Sanzo, of Liechtenstein, with 2 minutes 25.18 seconds.
Apart from the 2 gold medals in monobob, the Romanian team also comes home with a bronze, won by Ramona Ionel in the mixed team speed skating event.
(translated by: Ana-Maria Popescu)