The gold medal tally during the first day of competition at the Tokyo Olympics included Ecuador’s Richard Carapaz winning his country’s first cycling medal, China’s Sun Yiwen defeating a five-time Olympian in épée fencing, and South Korea’s An San and Kim Je Deok hitting the mark in mixed team archery.
A roundup of gold medals from Saturday, July 24 at the Tokyo Games:
Archery: Mixed Team
An San and teenager Kim Je Deok paired up to lead South Korea to a gold medal in the Olympic debut of archery’s mixed team event at the Tokyo Games.
On a sizzling Saturday at the Yumenoshima Park Archery Field, they held off Gabriela Schloesser and Steve Wijler of the Netherlands by a tally of 5-3 to bring home yet another archery gold for South Korea. The country has now captured 14 of 17 gold medals in archery team competitions since the current format was introduced to the Olympics in 1988.
What’s more, it was the 24th Olympic gold medal for South Korea’s archery program, matching short track speed skating for most by the country in a particular sport.
Alejandra Valencia and Luis Alvarez combined for Mexico and knocked off Yasemin Anagoz and Mete Gazoz of Turkey to earn the bronze medal.
Cycling: Men’s Road Race
Ecuador won its first cycling medal as Richard Carapaz took gold in the Olympic road race.
Embracing his nickname of “The Locomotive,” Carapaz rode away from American breakaway buddy Brandon McNulty as they approached the finish at Fuji International Speedway.
He slapped his handlebars in celebration as he crossed the line, where he was greeted by one of the few crowds allowed at the Olympics.
The chasing group rounded the corner in sight of him at the finish line, then played a game of cat-and-mouse for the other two medals. Belgian star Wout van Aert wound up edging Tour de France champion Tadej Pogacar of Slovenia in a photo finish.
Fencing: Women’s Épée Individual
Sun Yiwen of China defeated five-time Olympian Ana Maria Popescu of Romania 11-10 in overtime to win gold in the women’s épée fencing competition.
Popescu tied the score at 10 with 3 seconds remaining to go to overtime, but Sun soon scored the winning point in the deciding period.
Sun completed her set of Olympic medals after winning individual bronze and team silver at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games. Popescu has yet to win an individual gold medal at any of her five Olympic appearances despite often being among the favorites. She won team gold in 2016.
Katrina Lehis of Estonia took the bronze by beating Russian fencer Aizanat Murtazaeva 15-8.
Judo: Men’s 60-kilogram
Naohisa Takato won Japan’s first gold medal at its home Olympics, beating Taiwan’s Yang Yung-wei in the men’s 60-kilogram judo final.
Takato won his final three bouts in sudden-death golden score, but took the final a bit anticlimactically after Yang committed too many fouls.
The charismatic Takato’s success in Japan's homegrown sport could provide a much-needed jolt of excitement for a nation still feeling profoundly ambivalent about these Olympics and discouraged by the scandals and coronavirus setbacks surrounding them.
Shooting: Women’s 10-Meter Air Rifle
China’s Yang Qian won the first gold medal of the Tokyo Olympics in women’s 10-meter air rifle.
Yang overtook Anastasiia Galashina when the Russian missed the center two rings for an 8.9 on her final shot.
Yang had a 9.8 on her final shot and finished with an Olympic record 251.8. Galashina finished at 251.1.
Switzerland’s Nina Christen took bronze.
Men’s 10-Meter Air Pistol
Javad Foroughi has become the oldest Iranian athlete to win an Olympic medal, earning gold in men’s 10-meter air pistol.
Foroughi set an Olympic record with 244.8 points, finishing 6.9 ahead of silver medalist Damir Mikec of Serbia. China’s Pang Wei, the 2008 gold medalist, took bronze.
The 41-year-old Foroughi surpasses Iranian weightlifter Mahmoud Namdjou, who was 38 when he took bronze at the 1956 Melbourne Games.
Foroughi, ranked fourth in the world, qualified fifth and immediately jumped to the lead in the finals with a series of shots in the 10-ring. He led Mikec by 4.2 points entering the final two shots and celebrated by waving his towel before kneeling on it to pray.
Weightlifting: Women's 49-kilogram
Hou Zhihui won China’s second gold medal of the Tokyo Olympics with a commanding showing in the women’s 49-kilogram weightlifting category.
Hou lifted a total 210kg, 3kg short of her world record, to take gold ahead of Indian lifter Chanu Saikhom Mirabai on 202. It was India’s first Olympic silver in weightlifting.
Indonesia took bronze as Windy Cantika Aisah lifted a total of 194kg.
Jourdan Delacruz of the United States was third after the snatch portion of the contest but failed on all three of her lifts in the clean and jerk.