Gu Ailing wins two golds in three days, and millions of hearts in China
Published: Jan 03, 2022 05:50 PM
Chinese skier Gu Ailing claimed two victories within three days at the World Cup competition, helping her become an unprecedented hit as a popular young figure in China.

On Saturday, Gu claimed a gold medal in the second half-pipe competition at the 50th FIS Freestyle Ski World Cup in Calgary, Canada, with 92.80 points, beating out local athlete Rachael Karker and US skier Hanna Faulhaber.

This was her second win during the New Year holiday in Calgary, following a victory in the first half-pipe competition on Thursday, and also her first championship of 2022.

Gu, known as Eileen in the US, was born in San Francisco to a Chinese mother and US father. She has competed for China since 2019.

The news of the talented 18-year-old's win grabbed the hearts of Chinese audiences on social media, where hashtags including "Gu Ailing claimed two victories in three days," and "Gu Ailing's victories at the FIS Freestyle Ski World Cup in Calgary" have earned more than 100 million views in total on China's Sina Weibo as of Monday.

"She is a person who regards ice and snow as a life goal, a person who uses wisdom, blood and sweat to create miracles in this winter sport," read one comment.

Calling herself "The Princess of Frog" on Sina Weibo, Gu expressed her joy saying, "Two days ago, I won the gold medal on a cold day of -30 C in 2021, and today I won another championship in the 30-­kilometer wind. I wish you all a Happy New Year!"

"I'm super, super happy," said Gu, who is tipped to win gold at the Beijing Winter Olympic Games.

Gu almost didn't make it to the competition as she had nearly missed her flight to Canada due to a misplaced passport. "I figured it out at the last moment, got to my flight, was the last person on my flight, forgot my phone charger, no mom, no coach... everything was just kind of chaotic," she said after her Thursday event's interview.