Shaun White earned his third Olympic halfpipe gold medal on Tuesday night with a truly amazing run, snowboarding his way to the top spot of the men's halfpipe competition during the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
REDEMPTION FOR SHAUN WHITE!February 14, 2018
The 31-year-old had three chances to complete a run, and his incredible third attempt sent him to the top of the leaderboard. Landing back-to-back 1440s, which require four full aerial rotations, White bested the competition in dramatic fashion.
The athlete scored a 97.75 for his final run, making him the first person to win three gold medals in the sport. His win also marks the 100th gold medal for the United States during its Winter Olympic history.
The competition was fierce throughout the event, with Japan's Ayumu Hirano winning the silver and Australia's Scotty James taking home the bronze. White was trailing behind Hirano before his third run but overcame the 19-year-old's score of 95.25 to win the gold.
After his win, White shed a few tears as he took in the historic moment.
“Honestly I just felt it inside [that] I had it. I knew I had to put it down. It’s so hard to describe,” he told NBC. “It’s the feeling that I knew I had it but I had to still do it. And I’m working my way through the run, trick after trick, and it’s going well, better and better. And I’m riding away and I can’t tell you how amazing it felt. I’m so proud of even my first run out here.”
“I was just hoping and praying that [the judges] gave it to me, you know? And I’m standing there and I’m like ‘I’m pretty sure I put it down…’ and they’re taking a while and I’m trying to not make eye contact with the judges’ booth,” he continued. “I just felt so overwhelmed, honestly. I’ve been through so much to get to this point. People talking about my age, talking about this injury I had in New Zealand I’m still recovering from… It’s all worth it now.”
White previously won gold at the 2006 and 2010 Winter Olympics, finishing in fourth place in Sochi in 2014.
Photo Credit: Getty / Tim Clayton - Corbis