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Why Olympic gold medalist Eva Samkova wears a mustache during snowboardcross

Jeff Passan
Yahoo Sports
Snowboard - Winter Olympics Day 9

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SOCHI, RUSSIA - FEBRUARY 16: Gold medalist Eva Samkova of the Czech Republic celebrates during the flower ceremony for the Ladies' Snowboard Cross Finals on day nine of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics at Rosa Khutor Extreme Park on February 16, 2014 in Sochi, Russia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia – The circus has the bearded lady. Now snowboardcross has the mustachioed gold medalist.

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Eva Samkova won gold in the snowboardcross event. (Jeff Passan)

Eva Samkova, a bubbly 20-year-old from the Czech Republic, dominated the demanding course at Rosa Khutor Extreme Park, benefitting from the semifinal crash of American Lindsey Jacobellis, her top challenger. And Samkova did so wearing a painted-on mustache above her top lip.

[Photos: Samkova is a beauty without her lucky mustache]

"It's for luck," Samkova said of the red-white-and-blue fauxstache, the colors resembling a Czech flag.

Samkova first wore the mustache at the 2011 Snowboarding World Championships in La Molina, Spain, and said she painted it because "I wanted to have fun."

[Related: Lindsey Jacobellis falters again in women's snowboardcross]

Her Olympic mustache starred in the aftermath of her decisive victory over Canadian Dominique Maltais (silver) and Chloe Trespeuch (bronze) of France. At the bottom of the course, Samkova removed a helmet emblazoned with wolves, chucked her board and started a celebration befitting of someone who braved the jumps and bumps of the snowboardcross course with style in both performance and facial hair.

"Today is special," Samkova said, "so it's a special mustache."

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