The story of Red Gerard’s path to Olympic glory just keeps getting crazier and crazier.
Gerard — the 17-year-old snowboarder from Silverthorne, Colo., who cursed on-air after earning America’s first gold medal at the 2018 Winter Olympics — apparently has an equally wild family rooting him on from the sidelines.
“I’d say they’ve been having some fun,” Gerard told the press following his big win. “Excuse me, but I got a Snapchat this morning at like 8:30 when I was taking a bus up, and they were all shotgunning beers on the way to the mountain.
“So I’d say they’ve been having a good time, yes.”
Gerard first made headlines at the 2018 Games after winning gold at the men’s slopestyle snowboarding event on Sunday — even despite the madcap morning that immediately preceded his medal-winning performance. According to The Wall Street Journal, Gerard nearly slept through his alarm, and when he finally got out of bed, he couldn’t find his coat.
“I gave him my jacket and sent him on his way,” said Gerard’s roommate and fellow U.S. snowboarder Kyle Mack.
Later, during the competition, Gerard also found himself in last place after two of his three runs, but he claimed he wasn’t stressed out about his performance.
"I just wanted to land a run,” Gerard said. “After falling on my second run, I was really excited for the third run."
Gerard ended up scoring an 87.16 on his last attempt, which was good enough to push him into first, and to send his family into a frenzy down at the bottom of the slopes.
Turns out Gerard’s enthusiasm and laid-back attitude might actually be rubbing off on his fellow athletes, too. Canadian Olympic snowboarder Sebastien Toutant said it was “cool to see” Gerard’s approach to the competition, especially when compared to the rest of the competitors.
"Everyone's trying to win and do good. But he actually enjoys snowboarding and you can see it,” said Toutant. “He'll snowboard until he can't snowboard."
Gerard will next be competing in the Big Air portion of the Winter Olympics next week.