Austrian Snowboarder Breaks His Neck In A Crash, Still Finishes The Race Like A Boss

I think sometimes, especially after we all watched Shawn White dominate the superpipe the other night, we forget how freaking dangerous some of these sports are. The Flying Tomato makes it look easy, but pay attention for a little bit longer and you’ll see these psychos barely escape death on the regular.

Take Austrian snowboarder, Markus Schairer, for example. He’s clearly a world-class snowboarder competing at the highest level and is in the top 1% of his sport. But one second he’s staring a big shiny medal right in the face and the next, he’s looking at a broken neck.

Böser Sturz von Markus #Schairer im #Snowboard Boardercross. Halswirbelbruch, aber Ärzte befürchten keine Folgeschäden #PyeongChang2018

— Lukas Zahrer (@ZaraLuk) February 15, 2018

He was in fourth place heading into that jump during the quarterfinal of the men’s snowboard cross when something went wrong causing him to land straight on his back. That resulted in a fracture of his fifth cervical vertebrae. I don’t want to get too medical here, but I’m thinking that’s not good.

But here’s how much of a bad ass Markus Schairer is…he got up, strapped in and finished the race

From NBC:

Schairer, who was in fourth place at the time, fell directly on his back during the quarterfinal race’s second to last jump. His head snapped back and hit the ground, sending his goggles into the air. He remained down following impact.

Schairer fractured his fifth cervical vertebrae, the Austrian Olympic committee said in the statement. He did manage to strap back into his board and belatedly finished the course. He’s expected to return to Austria for further testing and treatment.