Red Bull X-Fighters World Tour 2014

at the Union Buildings in Pretoria

Snowboarding star crash-lands in Sochi

Comment on this story


IOL OLYMPICS-SNOWBOARDING-_0211_11

REUTERS

Shaun White of the US reacts after the men's snowboard halfpipe final at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games. Picture: Lucas Jackson

Sochi - For Shaun White, the greatest snowboarder of his generation and the inspiration to millions of daredevil kids wanting to follow in his tracks, the Sochi Olympics was not so much a hard fall but a crash landing.

The biggest drawcard of the Games turned out to be one of the major flops after pulling out of his first event and failing to win a medal in his second.

For the crowds that flocked to the Caucasus Mountains hoping to see him produce his jaw-dropping tricks and the millions of people watching on television, it was a letdown of major proportions.

Before the Games, the American had brazenly talked up his prospects of going for not one but two gold medals after slopestyle was added to the Olympic programme for the first time.

But after he fell on one of his first practice runs, the man who was once considered the ultimate daredevil on snow announced that he was pulling out because he was wanted to save himself for the halfpipe.

The halfpipe has long been White's domain. He won the gold medal at the past two Olympics and a third victory in Sochi would have elevated him to a rare pantheon of people who have won the same individual event at three Olympics.

Copy of IOL OLYMPICS-SNOWBOARDING-_0211_11

Shaun White of the US performs a jump during the men's snowboard halfpipe final event at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games. Picture: Dylan Martinez

REUTERS

But in his sport, in which competitors pride themselves on taking risks, he quickly came under heavy criticism from supporters and critics alike.

His decision to quit the slopestyle only added to the pressure to win the halfpipe and the 27-year-old looked to be well on his way when he posted the highest score in the qualifiers.

But in the final, when the pressure was at its greatest and the crowds were cheering as loud as they could, he was unable to reproduce his best form.

He made a hash of his first run and failed to garner enough points on his second to get on the podium as Switzerland's Iouri “I-Pod” Podladtchikov nailed his landings to take the gold medal ahead of Japanese teenagers Ayumu Hirano and Taku Hiraoka.

“I definitely knew what run I wanted to put down,” White told a news conference.

“My dream scenario was I was going to land the first run and have the opportunity to maybe do something that's never been seen before, with the triple cork or something like that.

“I tried to win. I went for it, I went for big tricks that only Iouri and myself are doing. I could have played it safe and tried to get a decent score, but I wanted to win.”

It was clear from the moment White arrived in Sochi that something was amiss with the normally laidback Californian.

When he pulled out of the slopestyle, he described the obstacle course as dangerous. Then he was highly critical of the halfpipe venue, saying the slushy snow had prevented him from practising his best tricks.

But he refused to blame the conditions on Tuesday, dismissing his performance as “one of those nights.”

“I had a tough time but everybody was riding the same conditions, everybody was in the same boat, that's the only thing that you can look at,” he said.

Although he said he plans to continue competing, questions about White's chances of returning to the top are sure to intensify.

When he won his first gold medal in Turin in 2006, he was a wide-eyed teenager who had made the transition from extreme skateboarding to snow and ice.

Four years later, in Vancouver, he was the coolest cat on the mountain, winning gold in baggy denim jeans with all the fearlessness and unwavering self-belief of an athlete at the peak of his powers.

But in the past year, a newer, more mature White has emerged. The long cherry-red locks of hair that earned him the nickname “The Flying Tomato” have been shorn, replaced by a more conservative look.

He is part-athlete, part-businessman, developing an expanding portfolio of commercial interests that include his sponsorships with snowboarding manufacturers, cameras, drinks makers and clothing lines.

He has already one of the highest-paid athletes in American sport and his added responsibilities have eaten into his playtime.

Challenges are nothing new to White, however. Although he started snowboarding at six and turned professional at 13, he has endured his fair share of setbacks.

He was born with a heart defect and twice underwent surgery before he was five.

In 2004 he spent six months in rehabilitation after coming back too soon from knee surgery. In 2009, he chipped a bone in his ankle and missed most of the season.

To stay ahead of the pack, White has had to constantly refine and improve his act, coming up with more elaborate and dangerous tricks.

He also modified his training regime. When he was younger he would spend all day on the snow but now he usually goes to the gym.

“The tricks that I've learned getting ready for this competition I think will carry on for the next couple of years within the sport,” he said.

“I don't really think tonight makes or breaks my career. I've been snowboarding for so long and I love it, it's given me so much. I'm happy just to take this for what it is and move on and continue to ride and put my best foot forward.” - Reuters


sign up
 
 

Comment Guidelines



  1. Please read our comment guidelines.
  2. Login and register, if you haven’ t already.
  3. Write your comment in the block below and click (Post As)
  4. Has a comment offended you? Hover your mouse over the comment and wait until a small triangle appears on the right-hand side. Click triangle () and select "Flag as inappropriate". Our moderators will take action if need be.

     

Join us on

IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks
HoopvolleToekoms
I'm a 32 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 32 and 39.
View Profile
Lulu_101
I'm a 36 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 38 and 45.
View Profile
LuckyCharm_440
I'm a 29 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 29 and 40.
View Profile
Athena
I'm a 37 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 37 and 45.
View Profile
Grace62
I'm a 33 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 33 and 42.
View Profile
This_is_m3
I'm a 45 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 50.
View Profile
Softberry
I'm a 36 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 55.
View Profile
Kwarenina
I'm a 47 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 42 and 52.
View Profile
JustAnna
I'm a 39 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 55.
View Profile
ddb65
I'm a 49 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 50 and 60.
View Profile
ChatRouge
I'm a 38 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 32 and 43.
View Profile
AM1234
I'm a 41 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 38 and 46.
View Profile
ioio
I'm a 37 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 45.
View Profile
supe24
I'm a 34 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 65.
View Profile
chicky582
I'm a 25 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 30.
View Profile
Dreamer1987
I'm a 27 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 35.
View Profile
KarooBoereMeisie
I'm a 34 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 40.
View Profile
Poppielap007
I'm a 23 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 29.
View Profile
voelkos
I'm a 54 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 56.
View Profile
Chanex
I'm a 20 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 23 and 26.
View Profile
PhoenixLin
I'm a 32 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 42.
View Profile
Lady66
I'm a 48 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 47 and 55.
View Profile
Lvit2C
I'm a 29 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 27 and 39.
View Profile
Duifie038
I'm a 45 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 36 and 50.
View Profile
Smarag
I'm a 20 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 22 and 30.
View Profile
Lonleyheart007
I'm a 42 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 50.
View Profile
xine_414
I'm a 28 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 35.
View Profile
Shyhazeleyes7412
I'm a 31 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 38.
View Profile
Belind4_M
I'm a 19 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 19 and 30.
View Profile
Viv42
I'm a 42 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 38 and 55.
View Profile
Lemoenbloeisel
I'm a 35 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile
pesin15
I'm a 38 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 18 and 100.
View Profile
MustLoveDogz
I'm a 33 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 33 and 43.
View Profile
kristella
I'm a 30 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 40.
View Profile
bluemon
I'm a 30 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile
butterflykisses14
I'm a 30 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 31 and 51.
View Profile
Elyn1980
I'm a 34 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 42.
View Profile
Liefterdiefter
I'm a 48 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 63.
View Profile
JustLooking69
I'm a 56 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 50 and 60.
View Profile
Gem31
I'm a 24 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 35.
View Profile
Cymbidium
I'm a 47 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 47 and 60.
View Profile
blondgirl
I'm a 57 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 53 and 60.
View Profile
Gypsey4Life
I'm a 51 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 50 and 62.
View Profile
Marianda
I'm a 25 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 30.
View Profile
KiTella
I'm a 31 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 29 and 42.
View Profile
Isolabelle
I'm a 38 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 45.
View Profile
lenQ313
I'm a 19 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 22 and 28.
View Profile
Ldp123
I'm a 43 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 44 and 58.
View Profile
CC82
I'm a 32 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile
00butterflygirl00
I'm a 30 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 28 and 36.
View Profile
Omdraai
I'm a 43 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 41 and 49.
View Profile
foxy583
I'm a 20 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 20 and 27.
View Profile
iamclassy
I'm a 43 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 50 and 62.
View Profile
devotedlady
I'm a 43 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 43 and 55.
View Profile
HottFoxx
I'm a 46 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 55.
View Profile
Sugababe
I'm a 41 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 32 and 42.
View Profile
ThisIsTheRemix
I'm a 33 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 31 and 41.
View Profile
Rietjie007
I'm a 43 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 46.
View Profile
Charms1203
I'm a 39 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 55.
View Profile
KaraatPlus
I'm a 43 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 41 and 54.
View Profile
Sosialemeis2
I'm a 28 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 46.
View Profile
blom788
I'm a 25 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 35.
View Profile
Graciousheart
I'm a 47 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 44 and 56.
View Profile
AGX
I'm a 36 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 44.
View Profile
mystiqueZN
I'm a 29 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 27 and 45.
View Profile
Lisa_Jayne
I'm a 27 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 23 and 35.
View Profile
Believer001
I'm a 30 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 32 and 45.
View Profile
Gem24
I'm a 24 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 40.
View Profile
Veronica2477
I'm a 38 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 50.
View Profile
Diena_van_die_Eike
I'm a 49 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 49 and 62.
View Profile
profile01
I'm a 42 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 39 and 47.
View Profile
DelightfullyTipsy
I'm a 38 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 38.
View Profile
ContagiousLaughter
I'm a 41 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 37 and 44.
View Profile
molletdelvalles
I'm a 39 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 55.
View Profile
AngelBabe1
I'm a 27 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 39.
View Profile
veldmuis007
I'm a 33 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 28 and 35.
View Profile
_Alwayssmiling
I'm a 30 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 41.
View Profile
AMy_303
I'm a 39 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 45.
View Profile
thrillsandfrills
I'm a 40 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 41 and 45.
View Profile
Stella143
I'm a 35 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 34 and 45.
View Profile
dreamsoftly
I'm a 49 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 47 and 58.
View Profile
Liesie
I'm a 31 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 33 and 45.
View Profile
Stiletto1
I'm a 53 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 50 and 57.
View Profile
kim2702
I'm a 46 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 38 and 50.
View Profile
Boulderhopper
I'm a 44 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 38 and 50.
View Profile
LOVINGLIFE417
I'm a 45 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 43 and 50.
View Profile
AmaJ
I'm a 44 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 42 and 50.
View Profile
Comet43
I'm a 43 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 54.
View Profile
lookingsexy200
I'm a 36 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 34 and 45.
View Profile
Sparkie92
I'm a 22 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 22 and 29.
View Profile
PixelFairy
I'm a 21 year old woman looking to meet men and women between the ages of 18 and 35.
View Profile
OneWay
I'm a 39 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 47.
View Profile
Pretty_Nerd
I'm a 28 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 37.
View Profile
itu22
I'm a 22 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 37.
View Profile
Natz79
I'm a 35 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile
Kosmos075
I'm a 39 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 55.
View Profile
KayBee75
I'm a 39 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 35 and 49.
View Profile
DaffodilTulip
I'm a 48 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 40 and 50.
View Profile
KissFromARose
I'm a 58 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 55 and 64.
View Profile
love_passionately
I'm a 43 year old woman looking to meet men between the ages of 45 and 55.
View Profile
philip_unplugged514
I'm a 62 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 50 and 65.
View Profile
happymaker66
I'm a 48 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 45.
View Profile
Geard1977
I'm a 37 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 27 and 38.
View Profile
Virion
I'm a 30 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 33.
View Profile
sailor_X897
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 60.
View Profile
rossi46
I'm a 66 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 55 and 65.
View Profile
LoveFriendFirst123
I'm a 56 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 50 and 72.
View Profile
FeaturedProfile
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 54.
View Profile
Summerstorm_007
I'm a 60 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 48 and 58.
View Profile
Rick1508
I'm a 49 year old man looking to meet women aged 39.
View Profile
koolstoof55
I'm a 59 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 45 and 63.
View Profile
audiess
I'm a 50 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 39 and 64.
View Profile
AJK1110
I'm a 59 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 55.
View Profile
TheDuke_99
I'm a 36 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 28 and 42.
View Profile
TheRealPeterPan
I'm a 35 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 28 and 35.
View Profile
gentlebutcrazy
I'm a 58 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 55.
View Profile
Red_Red_Wine
I'm a 61 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 39 and 59.
View Profile
MAN_BOU
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 50 and 75.
View Profile
Kawa1000
I'm a 49 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 50.
View Profile
Eugene053
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 45.
View Profile
Dreamzzz
I'm a 48 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 45.
View Profile
Tall_fun
I'm a 45 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile
Double_N
I'm a 41 year old man looking to meet men between the ages of 25 and 50.
View Profile
Mark_tv
I'm a 42 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile
LEO1982
I'm a 32 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 24 and 40.
View Profile
Pete_1
I'm a 70 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 55 and 65.
View Profile
Cruisingoldie
I'm a 46 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 50.
View Profile
JONGKEREL
I'm a 62 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 49 and 55.
View Profile
Stream_Net
I'm a 32 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 24 and 32.
View Profile
Carden
I'm a 32 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 24 and 30.
View Profile
tigercat
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 22 and 54.
View Profile
QuietDreamer
I'm a 34 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 35.
View Profile
niemandsland
I'm a 30 year old man looking to meet men between the ages of 28 and 40.
View Profile
Rebelinbluejeans
I'm a 62 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 62.
View Profile
Romanticseb
I'm a 59 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 45 and 57.
View Profile
heartroll
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 49 and 60.
View Profile
TheRisingSun
I'm a 41 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 40.
View Profile
JustJve99
I'm a 47 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 45.
View Profile
Rumrun
I'm a 56 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 44 and 56.
View Profile
MAX_33
I'm a 55 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 33 and 53.
View Profile
Fairtalk101
I'm a 46 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 45.
View Profile
MysticKitesurfer
I'm a 43 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 27 and 36.
View Profile
B_B_B
I'm a 43 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 18 and 45.
View Profile
Yinyani
I'm a 57 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 55.
View Profile
Stressfree
I'm a 58 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 42 and 52.
View Profile
letslook
I'm a 46 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 45.
View Profile
umustbsomewhere
I'm a 61 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 45 and 55.
View Profile
IceDad66
I'm a 48 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 45.
View Profile
chester3
I'm a 54 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 49 and 76.
View Profile
saks001
I'm a 61 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 47 and 59.
View Profile
DoctorSpin
I'm a 41 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile
Lifechanger_7
I'm a 25 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 18 and 30.
View Profile
ch_nb
I'm a 28 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 18 and 45.
View Profile
srchinluv
I'm a 52 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 46 and 65.
View Profile
shadowwarrior
I'm a 59 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 38 and 55.
View Profile
Rich_H
I'm a 48 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 48.
View Profile
maybe_111
I'm a 41 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 23 and 39.
View Profile
Soulsearcher72
I'm a 42 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 45.
View Profile
skyandsand
I'm a 31 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 35.
View Profile
Gster1
I'm a 64 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 45 and 60.
View Profile
Ben_57
I'm a 57 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 42 and 55.
View Profile
Espavo
I'm a 50 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 48.
View Profile
JustCallMeBwana
I'm a 47 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 28 and 38.
View Profile
CapeLover
I'm a 49 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 41 and 50.
View Profile
MOOLMAN
I'm a 56 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 48 and 62.
View Profile
big_guy_soft_heart
I'm a 43 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 42.
View Profile
cloudhopper
I'm a 56 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 45 and 55.
View Profile
OldGoat4400
I'm a 53 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 48.
View Profile
WieEnWaar
I'm a 63 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 50 and 62.
View Profile
waitingforgodot
I'm a 68 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 53 and 60.
View Profile
boersoekvrou14
I'm a 39 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 42.
View Profile
Determined_69
I'm a 45 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 47.
View Profile
cornrlius205
I'm a 46 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 50.
View Profile
Liefasb
I'm a 63 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 50 and 60.
View Profile
matiekat
I'm a 66 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 18 and 100.
View Profile
drurie
I'm a 66 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 60 and 66.
View Profile
WanderingShadow
I'm a 39 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 20 and 40.
View Profile
oth1982
I'm a 32 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 18 and 100.
View Profile
LiveLifeAlways
I'm a 43 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 33 and 41.
View Profile
BobTheExtremeBuilder
I'm a 47 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 47.
View Profile
Mfactor
I'm a 41 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 40.
View Profile
Marley77
I'm a 37 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 28 and 35.
View Profile
GenuineJ
I'm a 64 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 48 and 64.
View Profile
arew
I'm a 49 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 55.
View Profile
Woody777
I'm a 50 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 35 and 55.
View Profile
Bushbaby210
I'm a 27 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 21 and 35.
View Profile
Glorious_Quest
I'm a 45 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 32 and 45.
View Profile
50pluslooking
I'm a 56 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 18 and 100.
View Profile
Mais_171
I'm a 49 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 55.
View Profile
Boereman
I'm a 52 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 52.
View Profile
Thebestone1
I'm a 57 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 40 and 52.
View Profile
Breukes
I'm a 35 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 26 and 35.
View Profile
bellagio
I'm a 69 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 55 and 65.
View Profile
Btt76
I'm a 38 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 25 and 42.
View Profile
Free_Spirited
I'm a 45 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 32 and 42.
View Profile
deeptime
I'm a 53 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 48 and 58.
View Profile
annns
I'm a 51 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 48 and 56.
View Profile
WagOngeduldig
I'm a 41 year old man looking to meet women between the ages of 30 and 45.
View Profile

Business Directory