'I'm bawling': Eileen Gu's classy act for 'heartbroken' Olympic rival

Eileen Gu (pictured right) celebrating her gold medal and (pictured left) Gu and Mathilde Gremaud consoling rival Tess Ledeux.
Eileen Gu (pictured right) won the gold medal at the Winter Olympic Games, before consoling her rival Tess Ledeux (pictured left) with bronze medallist Mathilde Gremaud in a lovely moment. (Getty Images)

Chinese teenage phenom Eileen Gu not only won gold during the big air competition, but the 18-year-old superstar showed incredible sportsmanship for her rival following the contest.

The 18-year-old, who is also a model, was born in California to an American father and Chinese mother, but represents China after switching allegiances in 2019.

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And the teen made history at the big air after securing a score of 94.50 in her final run after landing the first 1620 of her career to win gold at the Beijing Winter Olympics.

The gold made her the youngest freestyle skiing medallist at the Winter Olympic Games.

However, the finish was nail-biting.

Gu watched on as France's Tess Ledeux only narrowly finished in second after a brilliant performance.

Ledeux appeared shattered after her run and sat down in the snow.

And in a heartwarming moment, Gu and bronze medallist Mathilde Gremaud went over and consoled her.

Fans quickly praised the sportsmanship from the medallists.

Eileen Gu's decision to represent China

There was plenty of controversy surrounding her decision to represent China.

“I have decided to compete for China in the 2022 Winter Olympics,” Gu announced at the time.

“The opportunity to help inspire millions of young people where my mum was born, during the 2022 Beijing Olympic Winter Games is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to help promote the sport I love.”

Gu's defection is a loss for America but a big win for the Olympic hosts, and the 18-year-old underlined why on an explosive debut last year at the 2021 X Games, where she won two golds — a first for a female rookie at the event.

She has now followed this up with a record gold at the Beijing Olympic Games.

Gu will be competing for two more Olympic gold medals.

Eileen Gu (pictured) celebrates after winning the gold medal during the Olympic Games.
Eileen Gu (pictured) won the gold medal during the Olympic Games 2022. (Photo by Christophe Pallot/Agence Zoom/Getty Images)

The 18-year-old arrived in the Chinese capital last week, posting a picture of herself eating dumplings on her Weibo social media account, to the delight of her 1.3 million followers.

A fluent Mandarin speaker with a distinct Beijing accent, Chinese state media has quickly latched onto its newfound star, eagerly covering her public appearances and numerous commercial deals.

State television filmed her feasting on Peking duck and admiring Tiananmen Square last year as the program host praised her "positive energy".

China doesn't allow dual nationality so taking a Chinese passport should have meant abandoning her US one, though Gu has not confirmed this is the case.

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