On Tuesday at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Mikaela Shiffrin raced in the downhill, while Eileen Gu earned a silver medal in ski slopestyle and Anna Gasser won her second straight Olympic gold in snowboard big air.
As always, we have live updates of all the action:
Women's short program
After much drama around Kamila Valieva's doping case, the women's short program got underway Tuesday. With training partner Nathan Chen and much of Team USA cheering her on, 2022 U.S. champion Mariah Bell fell on her opening triple combo but kept on smiling through her skate. Two-time U.S. champion Alysa Liu, the American woman with the best chance to podium, did not do a triple axel but skated cleanly in her Olympic debut. The 16-year-old beamed leaving the ice and is in eighth place. Karen Chen, the 2017 U.S. champion, fell again on the triple loop, the same jump she missed in the team event, where she helped Team USA win silver. Bell and Chen are in 11th and 13th place, respectively.
Earlier, Japan's Wakaba Higuchi became the fifth woman to land a triple axel at the Olympics.
Valieva took the ice despite many people feeling like she shouldn't be there at all. The 15-year-old tested positive for a banned substance last week but was cleared to compete. "It makes you question everything," commentator Tara Lipinski said on NBC. Valieva stumbled through her triple axel but still took the lead with a score of 82.16. Teammate Anna Shcherbakova skated into second, while Japan's Kaori Sakamoto played spoiler for Russia's podium sweep hopes (for now). She is in third ahead of the free skate on Thursday. -- Elaine Teng
Alysa Liu leads the way for #TeamUSA after the women's short program!#TeamUSA in the standings:— U.S. Figure Skating (@USFigureSkating) February 15, 2022
8. Alysa Liu - 69.50
11. Mariah Bell - 65.38
13. Karen Chen - 64.11
Competition Central: https://t.co/usrvPnbq5i#WinterOlympics #Beijing2022 pic.twitter.com/ekP5OUPcwZ
Yiming is golden
Su Yiming gets big air, can confirm.
Yiming's second medal of the Games (silver in slopestyle), and first gold medal, carried extra significance as he became the first Chinese snowboarder to win gold at the Olympic Winter Games -- and he did it in his home country.
After scoring a 89.50 on his first run, the 17-year-old completed a ridiculous second run earning a score of 93.00. The pair of huge 1800s (front and backside) in his first two runs were enough to secure him the men's snowboard big air crown. After his final run -- which was essentially just a victory lap as the win was already sealed -- he received a standing ovation before being swarmed by his fellow competitors in congratulations for his historic feat.
Meanwhile, things didn't go exactly according to plan for Team USA's Red Gerard and Chris Corning.
Gerard came in fifth place, which is the same spot he finished at the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics, while Corning finished seventh. -- Tory Barron
Germany sweeps two-man bobsled
Germany completed a sweep of the two-man bobsled medals with the great Francesco Friedrich taking gold.
One nation taking all spots on the podium has never happened in Olympic bobsled history, but Germany's dominance on the track was absolute as Friedrich piloted his sled (with teammate Thorsten Margis) to a gold-medal time of 3:56.89. Having won double gold at Pyeongchang in both the two- and four-man bob, Friedrich has secured three of the four parts needed for a remarkable back-to-back defense of his title.
Friedrich -- who took the course record in the third heat in 58.99 seconds -- was pushed by the team of Johannes Lochner and Florian Bauer, who finished with silver, 0.49 seconds behind the winning pair, while their fellow countrymen Christoph Hafer and Matthias Sommer took bronze.
Shiffrin races again
After a challenging first week at the 2022 Olympic Games, which saw her record two "Did Not Finish" results in her best two races and a ninth-place finish in the super-G, Mikaela Shiffrin returned to competition in Tuesday's downhill event.
Competing 12th in a field of 36, Shiffrin crossed the finish line in 1:34.36, which was the 11th-fastest result at the time of her completion. It was her first time competing in the race in the Olympics, but she has won the event twice on the World Cup circuit, and recorded five podium finishes.
By the time the event concluded, she had fallen to 18th place and was 2.49 seconds behind gold-medalist Corinne Suter of Switzerland. Sofia Goggia and Nadia Delago, both of Italy, earned the silver and bronze.
Shiffrin, who has been candid about her struggles at these Games, told reporters she wasn't thinking about finishing on the podium before the race.
"I'm not focusing on the medal anymore," she said. "It's just trying to do my best execution every day. Anyway, that's my best shot at a medal. So it's a little bit of maybe a paradox ... that your best chance to have that performance is to stop thinking about the performance and to focus on what you're doing in that moment. So I'm just trying to be present in the moment, especially with the downhill."
Shiffrin seemed to do just that as she smiled and waved at the camera after finishing the race. She'll have one more opportunity to win a medal at the 2022 Olympic Games during Thursday's combined event. She won the silver medal in the discipline in 2018. -- D'Arcy Maine
Gu gets another medal
Eileen Gu had a second-place finish in the women's ski slopestyle competition, meaning she could still become the first action-sports athlete to capture three medals at the same Winter Games. (She will compete in halfpipe later this week.)
Medal # 2️⃣ for Eileen Gu. 🥈— NBC Olympics (@NBCOlympics) February 15, 2022
The 18-year-old earns her second Olympic medal of the 2022 #WinterOlympics in women's freeski slopestyle.
📺 @nbc and @peacockTV
💻 https://t.co/kCkQzKDhze pic.twitter.com/oDfUgndd3g
Gu won big air last week, but her bid for another gold medal was thwarted by Mathilde Gremaud of Switzerland. Sitting in eighth place after two runs, Gu used a strong final run to work her way onto the podium. She couldn't catch Gremaud, who scored an 86.56 on her second run. Kelly Sildaru of Estonia took home bronze.
Repeat in big air
Austria's Anna Gasser did it again! The 2018 Olympic gold medalist won back-to-back gold in women's snowboard big air after earning a 95.50 score in the third run.
Gasser, 30, held the lead after the first round as she went head-to-head with this year's slopestyle gold medalist, Zoi Sadowski-Synnott, of New Zealand. Sadowski-Synnott came back strong to take the lead by .25 in the second run. Under pressure, Gasser recorded a superb third run, while Sadowski-Synnott fell in her third run.
Anna Gasser DEFENDS HER GOLD!— NBC Olympics (@NBCOlympics) February 15, 2022
The Austrian goes back-to-back in women's big air thanks to a 95.50 on her final run!#WinterOlympics
📺 : @USA_Network and @peacockTV
💻 : https://t.co/DaRR18atEa pic.twitter.com/IFu3t5mbIZ
Immediately after Gasser's run, the rest of the snowboarders swarmed her, embracing her for her performance. She joins Chloe Kim, Jamie Anderson and Ester Ledecká as the only women with multiple gold medals in snowboarding at the Olympics.
Japan's Kokomo Murase picked up the bronze, and Team USA's Hailey Langland finished 12th. -- Aishwarya Kumar
Shuster has an epic day
Team USA's skipper, John Shuster, who is playing in his fifth straight Olympics, came in clutch, stealing a point off his final throw of the eighth. That shot resulted in the U.S. beating Switzerland 7-4, making the four-team playoffs. His family was, understandably, quite excited:
The U.S. will play Italy next on Tuesday, which is currently at the bottom of the standings.
Shuster also had a pretty great Valentine's Day ...
Roses are red, medals are gold?
When it comes to Valentine's Day, roses and chocolate are par for the course for the occasion. However, Shuster's son, Luke, had something a little more timely in mind when crafting a card to show love for his dad.
Namely, gold medals.
We see no lies here.
Olympic judging at snowboarding events on slopestyle, in the halfpipe and now at big air has come under fire from the boarders themselves, who say they are fed up with inconsistent and, at times, blatantly incorrect scoring with so much on the line.
"It's heartbreaking," Red Gerard said Monday. "There's nothing they can do after they put the scores in to change it. ... You're talking about, this is life-changing for some people, you know?" Read more on it here.