Marit Bjorgen makes Olympic history in PyeongChang

Cross-Country Skiing - Winter Olympics Day 1

All Marit Bjorgen needed was one event.

One race to make history.

Bjorgen on Saturday became the most decorated female Winter Olympian by picking up the silver medal in the women’s 15km skiathlon at the Alpensia Cross-Country Centre in PyeongChang, South Korea.

The silver is Bjorgen’s 11th career Olympic medal, most ever by a female Winter Olympian. With two more, she’ll tie Norwegian biathlete Ole Einar Bjoerndalen as the most decorated Winter Olympian. Three more would put her in sole possession of that title.

Charlotte Kalla of Sweden separated herself from the field to win her third Olympic gold medal and her sixth medal overall. Kalla finished in 40 minutes, 44.9 seconds. Bjorgen closed 7.8 seconds behind Kalla.

Finland’s Krista Parmakoski took home the bronze medal. She finished the race in 40 minutes, 55 seconds. It’s Parmakoski’s second career Olympic medal.

Bjorgen’s next chance at a medal will be Tuesday’s women’s 10km individual sprint.

Jessie Diggins finished in fifth place, completing the race in 40 minutes, 59.6 seconds. The U.S. will have to wait another day to end their 42-year long Olympic medal drought in cross-country skiing.

Cross-country continues Sunday (1:15 a.m EST) with the men’s 30km skiathlon. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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