High-flying snowboard crew poised to deliver Canada's 1st medal of Games

The Opening Ceremonies of the 1994 Olympics in Lillehammer Norway

"It's a duel that motivates me", said Fourcade, the 29-year-old French army officer.

"I don't want to think too much about the past today, but I appreciate the fact I'm here on my snowboard", he said.

"I'm just really glad to be able to snowboard, and to snowboard at this level", he said after qualifying.

The top six boarders from each heat progress to the final. Known for his innovative rail tricks, his line was one of the most imaginative of the day.

On those three jumps, Gerard landed a switch backside 1260 on an angled kicker to the side.

Red Gerard's gold-medal run included a backslide triple cork 1440 that wowed the judges. His clean run scored him a strong 87.16 points. "I was able to watch Mark [McMorris, a fellow Canadian snowboarder] land the most hard run of the day, but it wasn't clean, and he was scored really low because of it".

His medal came on an eventful day after an natural disaster triggered an alert, winds disrupted events and a fire warning was issued on a day of more sub-zero cold that left athletes and spectators shivering. The teen is the sixth of seven children. Gerard leaned over the fence and chatted with International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach in a conversation surely he would be sharing later in the crowded media zone.

"That was scary, very scary", Gerard told Bach.

'I think we got a break in the third run, which was really nice, but the first two runs were pretty hard'.

"It's a little bit different and I try to be different in my runs".

McMorris's fellow Canadian, Max Parrot, the last snowboarder of the day, then bumped him to third with a brilliant final run that netted a score of 86.00, falling just short of the gold. In the meantime, though, they are just focused on enjoying his first gold medal.

Musgrave finished 25.7 seconds behind Kruger.

On Saturday, Norway's Marit Bjoergen entered the history books at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang. But its greatest snowboarder, Terje Haakonsen, boycotted the sport's debut at the 1998 Nagano Games as an act against the International Ski Federation becoming snowboarding's governing body.

There were four Canadians in the 12-man final.

Canada won its first medals of Pyeongchang 2018 with a silver and bronze in men's slopestyle snowboard.

Parrot and Toutant both called out Shaun White for dropping out of slopestyle in Sochi, saying he was ducking the competition.

Just 11 months before the Olympics, the Canadian began battling his way back from life-threatening injuries.

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