Red Gerard became the first member of Team USA to take gold in the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang. At just 17 years old, Gerard became the youngest U.S. snowboarder to ever win an Olympic medal and gave the U.S. its second straight gold in slopestyle.
Naturally, his family on hand went nuts when Gerard jumped up from 11th place to the top of the podium with a score of 87.16 on his final run Sunday morning.
— U.S. Ski & Snowboard Team (@usskiteam) February 11, 2018
This is Red Gerard’s 9-year-old sister, Asher, the youngest of the seven Gerard siblings. I asked what she was going to tell her brother when she saw him. “I love you,” she said. pic.twitter.com/QSzhT40nNg
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 11, 2018
Folks back in his hometown of Rocky River, Ohio, were watching his run live at a watch party.
The crowd erupted.
Gerard, who relocated to Colorado after growing up in Rocky River (just outside Cleveland), fell on his first two runs, before passing the rest of the field to win the gold ahead of two Canadians, Max Parrot (86.00) and Mark McMorris (85.20).
“It was awesome,” Gerard said. “I just told myself that I wanted to land a run, and I was a little bummed on my first two runs because I fell a couple of times.
“I’m just so happy that it all worked out.”
Gerard won’t compete again until the Big Air event on Feb. 24. That will give his family plenty of time to party — if they recover from Sunday’s festivities.
Gerard’s 87.16-point run, punctuated by a spinning, flipping jump through the mountain chill, launched him into first place and ultimately earned him the United States’ first medal of the Games, a gold that would cause those rowdy Gerards to let the party rage all night.
“If we’re not in jail,” brother Brendon Gerard said, “then something didn’t go right.”
“Right on,” father Conrad Gerard said, shortly after dispensing a Cass Light empty.
Let the celebration begin, all Saturday night in America and for who-knows-how-long over here, with this loud, lovable and loaded gang of Gerards. His family, Clevelanders by way of Colorado, particularly four older brothers, had ushered him into the sport and now watched him stand on top of an Olympic podium.
“I saw a video of them shotgunning beers at 8:30 a.m.,” Gerard said. “I’m pretty sure they’re doing just fine.”
More Olympic coverage from Yahoo Sports:
• How the Olympics could unify Korea
• Dutch speedskating fans troll Donald Trump with message on flag
• Teenager Red Gerard wins first U.S. medal, taking gold in snowboarding slopestyle
• Earthquake hits roughly 100 miles from PyeongChang
• South Korea wins first gold in speed skating in unusual way
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