Teenager Yuzuru Hanyu won Japan's first ever Olympic Games men's figure skating title on Friday as Sochi temperatures soared and reputations crashed.
Hanyu, 19, took gold despite falling twice in the free skate, his performance aided by his world record short program 24 hours earlier and the inability of rival, three-time world champion Patrick Chan to stay on his feet.
Denis Ten moved up from ninth after the short program to take a first Olympic figure skating bronze for Kazakhstan.
"A win's a win's a win. It's going to sink in. This is history. It's a gift for my country," said Hanyu.
Hanyu sealed his historic victory with his free skate to Nino Rota's "Romeo and Juliet" in front of a capacity crowd at the Iceberg Skating Palace, forgetting for the moment the absence of Russian star Yevgeny Plushenko.
Carrying a 3.93-point lead in from the short program Hanyu scored 178.64 for the free skate, despite a two-point deduction, for an overall total of 280.09.
Chan, 23, achieved 178.10 to take silver after stumbling through Vivaldi's "Four Seasons" and "Concerto Grosso" for an overall total of 275.62.
Swiss outsider Sandro Viletta won men's super combined ski gold as the big Alpine ski stars again failed to fire.
World champion Ted Ligety could only finish 12th while French tyro Alexis Pinturault crashed out of the afternoon slalom when well-placed on the mountain course at Rosa Khutor.
As temperatures nudged 14 degrees Celsius, Viletta, 14th after the morning downhill, swept down the increasingly slushy course to post a winning time of 2min 45.20sec.
Croatian veteran Ivica Kostelic (2:45.54) won his third consecutive Olympic silver in the event while Italy's Christof Innerhofer won bronze to add to his second place in the downhill.
Victory for Viletta -- who has not had a single World Cup podium finish in the event -- came just two days after compatriot Dominique Gisin won a shock gold in the women's downhill.
"This is amazing. It's perfect. It's also a big shock. I didn't think I would come first," said the 28-year-old Swiss.
Just as the likes of Ligety, Pinturault and Bode Miller flopped in the mountains, the once sky-high reputation of Russian figure skating icon Plushenko plummeted as the day progressed.
The 31-year-old double Olympic champion had retired on Thursday after a back injury forced him to quit the men's final.
But there was frustration that the fragile veteran had not pulled out of the Olympics after winning gold in the team competition, which would have allowed Russia to field a replacement in the men's event.
"It was a lamentable spectacle," Russian figure skating legend and three-time Olympic gold medallist Irina Rodnina told Sovietsky Sport.
His departure was also highly controversial given the debate that preceded his selection over his younger rival, the Russian champion Maxim Kovtun, 18.
Meanwhile, as temperatures soared, some cross country skiers stripped down to their shorts for the gruelling men's 15km classic time trial.
Organisers also had to bring forward the start time of the morning downhill element of the super-combined skiing event while a series of freestyle skiing training sessions were later cancelled in order to protect the fragile surfaces.
Switzerland's Dario Cologna won his second gold of the Games with a dominant performance in the men's 15km cross country.
Belarus skier Darya Domracheva put in a phenomenal display to win her second biathlon gold of the Sochi Olympics in the women's 15km individual.
Freestyle skier Alla Tsuper then won the women's Aerials to ensure Belarus's most successful Olympics ever.
Tsuper, 34, edged out world champion Xu Mengtao of China into silver with Australia's reigning Olympic champion Lydia Lassila taking bronze.
Lizzy Yarnold earned Britain's first gold medal in Sochi with victory in the skeleton.
The 25-year-old, who led the event after the two opening runs, produced two more consistent rounds to clock a combined time of 3min 52.89sec to finish 0.97sec ahead of second-placed Noelle Pikus-Pace of the United States.
Russia's 2013 European champion Elena Nikitina was third.