American Sage Kotsenburg needed to go through an extra round of qualifications on Saturday but used the chance to capture the first ever Olympic snowboard slopestyle gold medal -- and the first of the 2014 Sochi Games.
The 20-year-old Kotsenburg came up with a score of 93.50 points on his first run as the third competitor and the mark held up the rest of the competition under skies over the Rosa Style course at Rose Khutor Extreme Park.
Kotsenburg had to go through the semifinals in the morning Saturday to book his spot in the finals. But it ended up working out.
Silver went to Norway’s Staale Sandbech with a score of 91.75.
The two-time slopestyle X Games champion Mark McMorris of Canada also went through the semi—finals to reach the finals and claimed the bronze medal with a score of 88.75.
Favourite Maxence Parrot of Canada failed to reach the podium, finishing fifth.
The sport was making its debut in the Olympic programme and drew a packed crowd despite snowboard superstar Shaun White having pulled out of the event in the build-up.