Women's Nordic combined athletes hope for one step further

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LES ROUSSES, France, Jan. 18 (Xinhua) -- Following the debut at an Olympic event at the ongoing Winter Youth Olympic Games, women's Nordic combined athletes have reasons to anticipate future moves for the sport's inclusion in the Winter Olympic Games.

Women's individual NH/4km Nordic combined at the Winter YOG on Saturday has been the first time that the event was included in an Olympic event, where the gold medal went to Austria's Lisa Hirner.

"I hope next time the sport is in the Olympics, I can be a starter," Hirner told Xinhua following her history-making victory.

After finishing 13th in the race, local favorite Emma Treand said, "It's super cool that Nordic combined can be included in the Youth Olympic Games for the first time."

"Because young girls can watch and practice it, it's a good start for the sport," she mentioned.

Asked about expectation that the event is added to the Winter Olympic Games program, she responded "of course I hope so."

American Nordic combined skier Tara Geraghty-Moats served as Athlete Role Model during the Lausanne 2020.

"I'm so proud of all the girls competing, and proud of how hard they've worked in training for this," she said. "But also in the community to develop women's Nordic combined and be good role models for even younger girls."

Geraghty-Moats thought that "to see such a successful competition here today will be inspiration to many even younger girls. It gives me goose bumps to see this here today."

"I'm really hoping the sport will be included in the 2026 (Winter Olympic) Games in Italy."

Geraghty-Moats revealed that she got a chance to talk with the International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach on Saturday.

"He hopes to see this sport develops to a higher level so that it's included as well," she said. "But we have a lot of work to do before this happens." Enditem

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