Olympians who never, ever give up. Here’s five snowboarders who will let nothing stand in their way of going to PyeongChang 2018:
Already assured of his place in snowboarding history, White is ALL IN for South Korea. Having missed out on the podium at Sochi 2014, the double Olympic champion is concentrating on the half pipe for PyeongChang, but has had his share of setbacks. First he was forced out of the season-opener in New Zealand after a training crash in September 2017. Then things got even worse. The following month, the 31-year-old posted a gory photo on Instagram (below) after another accident. His recovery still continues, but his passion remains undimmed.
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I’ve always lived my life by pushing the limits. Winning is great, but it’s the tough times that truly define you. I took a slam while training the other day, but don’t worry I’ll be back soon and better than ever!! Thanks @beatsbydre for bringing me into the family. #NormalisBoring #1of1 #RockNRoll
If Mark McMorris makes it on the plane to PyeongChang, that achievement alone is worthy of genuine wonder. Read this and wince: broken jaw, broken arm, ruptured spleen, pelvic fracture, rib fractures and a collapsed lung… Yep, that was a pretty bad fall. The Olympic bronze medallist suffered the life-threatening crash in March 2017 but is still hopeful of making a recovery. The thing is McMorris has been here before – and has an amazing support team. Watch how he clawed his way back to bronze at Sochi 2014:
Big crashes will always grab headlines and attention. But for this smiley Olympic champ, the battles lay not just on the slopes – but in her head. First, her three-year marriage fell apart which is enough mental stress for anyone. Then, a fatal accident took away her best friend, Canadian freestyle skier, Sarah Burke. Bright sunk into a deep depression and, for a while, considered walking away from snowboarding altogether. She made her mental health the priority and, now, she is back in training looking to add to her Olympic tally in South Korea.
One of Sweden’s brightest medal hopes for PyeongChang had a frustrating summer spent not on the slopes but in a sling. A shoulder injury meant surgery and a period of recovery for the slopestyler, but nothing stops him from having fun (including naked lake-diving with his dogs). But it’s not all about partying: check out this video where Thorgren shreds a test proving his all-round fitness.
Austria will be hoping to see the Anna Gasser who finished the 2017 season as world champion after her 2016 campaign was cut short with a back problem. Due to the way the qualification works, Gasser doesn’t have to fight for her place in PyeongChang. Instead, she has must strike the balance between avoiding any bad falls and remaining competition-ready. The former gymnast sat out the season-opener in New Zealand to rest a knee injury but bagged top spot in the first Big Air World Cup event in Milan in November. Plus, she recently landed a cab double cork 1080 (video below), serving notice that an injury-free Gasser remains the woman to beat.