Russia's Arsen Galstyan and Sarah Menezes of Brazil made history for their respective countries as they won gold medals on the opening day of the Olympic judo competition on Saturday.
Galstyan won Russia's first Olympic gold in the sport since the break-up of the old Soviet Union while Menezes became the first woman from her country to climb the top step of the judo rostrum at the Games.
For Galstyan it was an especially poignant moment as the 23-year-old is from Krasnodar, the town that suffered flash flooding earlier this month that resulted in 170 deaths.
"My medal will mean a lot and talking of people who suffered from the flood I wish to express my condolences to them," he said.
"My medal will show that Russian judo athletes and Russian sport should be number one.
"I feel absolutely wonderful and I'm very happy that I'm the person who's brought the gold medal to Russia because we've waited for a very long time. I dont have enough words to explain my feelings."
Having stunned world champion Rishod Sobirov in the semi-final, the Russian beat Japan's second seed Hiroaki Hiraoka in just 40 seconds in the under-60kg final.
The fourth seed produced a stunning finale to flatten Hiraoka with a sweeping, winding throw (harai-maki-komi).
He had been forced to hold on in the semi-final against Uzbekistan's world number one but he survived and when Sobirov made a mistake in the sudden-death golden score period, Galstyan pounced to take his opponent over backwards and secure a place in the final.
Sobirov went on to win bronze alongside Brazil's Felipe Kitadai.
Menezes's victory was the culmination of a meteoric rise in Brazilian women's judo since the Athens Games eight years ago.
That was when coach Rosicleia Campos took over, at a time when winning any Olympic medal was a distant dream.
But now Brazilian women are one of the leading nations in the sport and Menezes is at the forefront of that.
"I'm delighted and I believe this medal will change my life, I waited and hoped for this medal and now I have it at just 22 so I'm very happy," she said before paying tribute to her inspirational coach.
"I'm very happy for Rose because she's the one that is always there for everyone, she travels with us and is at the competitions and training and I'm very proud of her.
"She doesn't just support me but supports all of the fighters.
"I've already started to realise what this medal means but the penny has only half dropped.
"I want to thank everyone who has helped me in my life and in my career and I'm exceedingly happy."
Menezes had been far from her best in the early rounds, but she proved a dogged competitor, sneaking through each bout before the final by the minimum yuko score.
There she faced the reigning champion Alina Dumitru of Romania but she was the one who made all the running and when she scored a yuko in the final minute she forced Dumitru to open up.
Ten seconds from the end, Menezes countered the Romanian with a shoulder throw (seoi-nage) for a waza-ari half point, which proved enough for gold.
Hungary's Eva Csernoviczki came back from being strangled out cold in the quarter-finals to win a bronze medal alongside Belgium's Charline van Snick.