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Winter Olympics 2018: Eric Radford has become the first openly gay athlete to ever win a gold medal

Josh Jackman February 12, 2018

(Twitter/rad85e)

Eric Radford has become the first ever openly gay man to win a gold medal at the Winter Olympics.

The Canadian athlete won gold in the team figure skating event after he and his partner Meagan Duhamel skated magnificently to Adele’s Hometown Glory.

(Twitter/rad85e)

He followed in the footsteps of Australian diver Matthew Mitcham, who got a gold medal at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.

Elsewhere in the team event, gay skater Adam Rippon made history for Team USA by taking a bronze medal after performing a solo skate to Coldplay’s O and Arrival of the Birds by Cinematic Orchestra.

GANGNEUNG, SOUTH KOREA - FEBRUARY 11: Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford of Canada compete in the Figure Skating Team Event ? Pairs Free Skating on day two of the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games at Gangneung Ice Arena on February 11, 2018 in Gangneung, South Korea. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
(Getty)

But it was Radford’s team who earned first place, with the skater winning gold alongside Gabrielle Daleman, Patrick Chan, Kaetlyn Osmond, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir.

The 33-year-old, who also used Hometown Glory to win gold at the 2016 World Championships, posted on Twitter about breaking this huge barrier at the Pyeongchang Games.

He wrote: “This is amazing!

(Twitter/rad85e)

“I literally feel like I might explode with pride. #Olympics #outandproud # ️‍ “.

Radford came out in the same year that he won a silver medal at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Russia.

At the time, he said: “I used to joke around that I’m the ultimate pair-boy.

“I never had to worry about developing an off-ice relationship.”

PYEONGCHANG-GUN, SOUTH KOREA - FEBRUARY 12: Gold medalists (L-R) Scott Moir, Tessa Virtue, Meagan Duhamel, Eric Radford, Kaetlyn Osmond, Gabrielle Daleman, and Patrick Chan of Team Canada celebrate during the medal ceremony after the Figure Skating Team Event at Medal Plaza on February 12, 2018 in Pyeongchang-gun, South Korea. (Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images)
(Getty)

Radford will compete again in the pairs tournament, while Rippon will perform another men’s single.

Speaking after his performance, Rippon said: “I want to throw up. I want to go over to the judges and say, ‘Can I just have a Xanax and a quick drink? I’ll be fine.’ But I kept it together.”

Canada's Meagan Duhamel (centre R) and Canada's Eric Radford (centre L) react after competing in the figure skating team event pair skating free skating during the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games at the Gangneung Ice Arena in Gangneung on February 11, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Mladen ANTONOV (Photo credit should read MLADEN ANTONOV/AFP/Getty Images)
(Getty)

Fans across the world applauded Radford’s achievement.

One wrote: “You are such a class act and in New Orleans we took time off from Mardi Gras to give you one enormous standing ovation – sooo proud!!!! “.

(Twitter/erick70115)

Another told him that “you should be proud ️‍ . And all of Canada is proud of you!”

(Twitter/arturmaks)

And yet another said: “This Canadian loving American is so proud of you and of all you amazing teammates.

(Twitter/showtunesrock)

“O Canada our home and native land…”.

Watch Radford’s incredible performance here:

More: adam rippon, Americas, Canada, Canada, Eric Radford, ice skating, pyeongchang, South Korea, sport, US, US, winter olympics 2018

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