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Virginia Thrasher of the United States celebrates winning the gold medal during the victory ceremony for the Women's 10m Air Rifle event, at Olympic Shooting Center at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, Aug. 6, 2016.
AP Photo/Hassan Ammar
The first winner.
SOLID GOLD

The first gold medalist at the Rio Olympics is an American

David Yanofsky
By David Yanofsky

Editor of code, visuals, and data

The Rio Olympics have just started, but medals are already being awarded. The first goes to a 19-year-old American, Ginny Thrasher from Springfield, Virginia, who took home the gold in 10-meter air rifle.

AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko
Thrasher waves after her victory

In the process, she set an Olympic record of 208 points.

AP Photo/Hassan Ammar
Thrasher smiles while securing the US’s first gold

Two members of the Chinese team took home the silver and bronze: Du Li, one point shy of Thrasher, won the silver; and Yi Siling was awarded the bronze with 185.4 points. Both were prior Olympic champions. Du won the gold in 2004 at the Athens Olympics, and Yi won gold in the 2012 games in London.

Thrasher is a sophomore at the West Virginia University, where she was the first freshman to win both NCAA rifle titles, according to the Guardian. According to the NBC broadcast, Thrasher began shooting just five years ago.

AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko
Thrasher bested Du Li and Yi Siling of China.

Her next event is the “50m rifle 3 positions” on Aug. 11.

Correction (Aug 6): A previous version of this item referred to Thrasher’s alma mater as the University of West Virginia.

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