Gus Kenworthy’s Winter Olympics medal hopes are in danger as he has broken his thumb.
The 2014 Olympic silver medalist in freestyle slopestyle skiing has said he broke the bone while practicing on the course in PyeongChang.
But the US athlete will not allow a small thing like a broken thumb to stop him from competing.
Kenworthy has confirmed he will take part in Sunday’s qualifying round for men’s slopstyle on Sunday (18 February).
Gus Kenworthy breaks thumb, will still compete
‘Broke my thumb yesterday in practice,’ he tweeted.
‘It won’t stop me from competing (obvi) but it does prevent me from shaking Pence’s hand so… Silver linings!
‘Will be giving my teammates (and literally everyone else) an enthusiastic “thumbs up!” of encouragement the rest of the trip.’
Broken thumbs might be painful, but they’re not an injury that can take a skier out of a major competition.
Canadian halfpipe skier Cassie Sharpe broke her thumb while competing in an X Games final. To modify, she taped her pole to her hand for the rest of the contest.
She won the bronze medal with one of those runs that came after the broken thumb.
So it is hoped Kenworthy will still be able to follow his success in Sochi.
Following up success in Sochi
Gus Kenworthy will fly the rainbow flag in Korea at the Winter Olympics
While this may be Gus Kenworthy’s second Olympics, it is his first as being an openly gay athlete.
Winning a silver medal in Sochi, he said he felt ‘horrible’ about being closeted at the Russian Games.
He came out in 2015, and has become a high profile star.
‘Very proud to be heading to Korea on behalf of my family, my hometown, the USA and the LGBTQ community!!! Woohoo!!!’ he said.
He has already confirmed that he will not accept a White House invitation from Donald Trump.