Russian teenager Alina Zagitova edged compatriot Evgenia Medvedeva with a stunning free skate that earned the Olympic Athletes from Russia a first gold at the Pyeongchang Games.

The 15-year-old, who lead Medvedeva by just over one point after a record-setting short programme on Wednesday, effortlessly executed every element of her jump-packed free skate, earning 156.65 points for the performance and 239.57 points overall.

Skating to Don Quixote by composer Leon Minkus in a flashy red tutu, Zagitova held on for her opening jump, a triple Lutz, and went on to land another six triple jumps.

Medvedeva, who trains with Zagitova under the same coaches, won silver with a spectacular skate that put her 1.31 points behind Zagitova in the overall score.

The training partners embraced after the competition, exchanging congratulations.

"I'm very happy that I was able to win a medal for our team," Zagitova told reporters. "I think this is only the beginning. Everything is still ahead."

Skating last, Medvedeva was visibly disappointed after her second-place score was announced. But the 18-year-old said she had been satisfied with how she had skated.

"I wanted to end these Olympics without any regrets. I was able to do that," Medvedeva said. "A great sports life awaits me. And like today, I will leave everything on the ice. I won't think of the past."

The performances of Zagitova and Medvedeva in Pyeongchang reasserted the dominance of Russian women figure skaters on the international stage with third-placed Canadian Kaetlyn Osmond more than seven points behind Medvedeva on 231.02.

"The Russian girls are impressive," said Osmond, who helped Canada win gold in the team event. "They're consistent and do everything that the sport is asking for. That's just something that everyone else has to try to keep up with."

The Russian Olympic delegation in Pyeongchang last week said they were unhappy that Olympic gold had eluded Russian competitors in the first half of the Games, stressing it expected one of its female figure skaters to end the drought.

Russians in Pyeongchang are competing as neutrals, a penalty imposed over allegations that the nation had systematically manipulated anti-doping testing at the 2014 Sochi Games.