Olympic athlete wins gold while wearing Ciri's Witcher medallion

The Witcher 3
(Image credit: Valery Sharifulin (Getty Images))

An Olympic athlete won a gold medal at the summer games while wearing a Witcher medallion around her neck.

Russian athlete Vitalina Batsarashkina, who competes in the 10m air pistol event, was spotted wearing the necklace while competing, as well as in post-event interviews. It's also not the first time she's been seen representing the fantasy franchise - as spotted by Kotaku during the Rio de Janeiro Olympics in 2016, Batsarashkina wore both a Witcher medallion and Witcher-themed shooting goggles as she claimed the silver medal.

However, while she was repping Geralt's School of the Wolf during the 2016 event, her allegiances seem to have changed over the past few years. Eagle-eyed fans have spotted that the new medallion is that of the School of the Cat, a school more closely associated with Ciri than the White Wolf himself. Given that she's managed to win gold this time around, it looks as though the change has paid off.

In Andrezj Sapkowski's fantasy novels, Ciri claims her medallion from the corpse of a bounty hunter that she killed. It's fitting, too, as the feline school not only has a historical partnership with the School of the Wolf, but is one of the few Witcher schools to take on female students, making it a perfect - if somewhat accidental - choice by Ciri.

Fans and developers alike have been celebrating Batsarashkina's success, which came as a result of her winning score of 390, just above fellow Russian Ekaterina Korshunova, who took the silver medal, and Greece's Anna Korakaki, who claimed bronze. Radek Grabowski, lead PR manager at developer CD Projekt Red, pointed out Batsarashkina's medallion on Twitter, noting her "years-long commitment to the Witcher universe" in a follow-up message.

Fans of The Witcher will have more to look forward to than some Olympic cameos this year. Feature-length animation The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf, which focuses on Geralt's teacher, Vesemir, is set to arrive on Netflix on August 23, while The Witcher Season 2 launches in December. When it comes to games, there's still no word on The Witcher 4, but developer CD Projekt says it'll be working on two parallel projects from next year, which could be good news for fans of Geralt and company.

The Witcher 3 features on our list of the best RPG games.

Ali Jones
News Editor

I'm GamesRadar's news editor, working with the team to deliver breaking news from across the industry. I started my journalistic career while getting my degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick, where I also worked as Games Editor on the student newspaper, The Boar. Since then, I've run the news sections at PCGamesN and Kotaku UK, and also regularly contributed to PC Gamer. As you might be able to tell, PC is my platform of choice, so you can regularly find me playing League of Legends or Steam's latest indie hit.