Tie leaves Sochi Olympics without enough gold medals for downhill ski winners

SOCHI, Russia - There wasn't enough gold to go around in the women's downhill event.

When Slovenia's Tina Maze and Switzerland's Dominique Geesin tied for first place on Wednesday with identical times of 1 minute, 41.57 seconds, it was the first tie in Olympic Alpine skiing history. That meant two golds for the event, one bronze for Switzerland's Lara Gut and no silver to be handed out.

Medal maker Adamas was prepared, having made some extra medals just in case. But there was one issue: one of the gold medals was not personalized to the women's downhill event.

The company says that the process for personalizing the medal takes at least 15 hours. It starts with removal of the ribbon. Then the medal is placed in a freezer of -40 degrees for several hours. The medal makers remove polycarbonate crystals and a protective coating from the medal before engraving the event on the side of the medal.

After engraving, the personalized medal is washed in an ultrasonic bath, then covered with a new layer of gold and a protective lacquer.

When the games are finished, any extra medals, including the silver for the women's downhill, will be given to Olympic museums around the world.

It wasn't immediately clear which skier got the original medal, but here's a tweet from Maze, who seems quite happy with hers: https://twitter.com/TinaMaze/status/433819233458597888.

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