Los Angeles Times

Not ready for a White-out

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea - The first hit was bad enough.

Shaun White was snowboarding in New Zealand when he took off a millisecond early on a double cork 1440 and came down hard, smacking the lip of the halfpipe at an awkward angle.

But that wasn't the worst part.

After the initial impact, his board dug in and whipped him forward, face-first, into the icy surface. Blood ran across the snow. A helicopter was summoned.

"All of a sudden," he says, "I was in the hospital."

It took 62 stitches to close a jagged gash across his forehead and mend the tip of his tongue. It would take something more to repair his confidence.

The previous few years had not gone well for the most successful snowboarder in history, the superstar with the flaming red

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