Oksana Masters triumphed for her fourth world title and fifth medal at the 2017 World Para Nordic Skiing Championships with today’s middle-distance cross-country win.
Andy Soule wins his second medal at world championships in a tight finish for bronze.
Team USA tallies seven medals in Finsterau with four gold, one silver and two bronze to tie for second in the medal count.
FINSTERAU, Germany – Capping off her remarkable run this week, Oksana Masters (Louisville, Kentucky) was crowned world champion for a fourth time at the 2017 World Para Nordic Skiing Championships with a dominate performance in the women’s sitting middle-distance cross-country race.
Masters made history in Finsterau, leaving as the most successful U.S. woman at a world championship since International Paralympic Committee records were maintained in the sport.
The three-time Paralympian in cycling, Nordic skiing and rowing executed perfectly on the 10-kilometer course, pacing the field with only a one second difference between her first two laps to finish 15 seconds ahead of Germany’s defending world and Paralympic champion Andrea Eskau with a time of 14:15.5. With the win, Masters sweeped cross-country events in Finsterau and took home her fifth medal at world championships, including her first world title won exactly one week ago.
Andy Soule (Pearland, Texas) fought his way onto the podium with a bronze-medal win in the men’s sitting race, defeating Korea’s Eui Hyun Sin by just over a second. His teammate Aaron Pike (Park Rapids, Minnesota) finished eighth in the race. Soule, a U.S. Army veteran, picked up his second medal of the world championships after winning silver on the first day of competition in cross-country sprint.
“Hearing quadruple champion is just really crazy. I’m honestly speechless; I don’t know what to say because it’s just something I never thought would happen. In the past, I’ve always been that second or third-best person so it feels pretty great to take four world championship titles for the U.S. Paralympic Nordic Skiing Program and also for Team USA.”
John Farra, High Performance Director, U.S. Paralympics Nordic Skiing
“That was an incredible week for our team; they continued to fight every day and learn how to improve in the technical parts of the course and continue to figure out how to master the sport of cross-country skiing and especially biathlon. This was a great effort for them and a great team effort for us all the way around.”
Team USA: 7
Oksana Masters: 4 gold (cross-country sprint, middle-distance cross-country, long-distance cross-country, sprint-distance biathlon); 1 bronze (individual biathlon)
Andy Soule: 1 silver (cross-country sprint); 1 bronze (middle-distance cross-country)
Full results and highlight videos from the 2017 World Para Nordic Skiing Championships can be found on the Finsterau 2017 website.