Talk about being extremely lucky....
Austrian snowboarder Markus Schairer was seriously injured in a horrific crash on Thursday during his run in a quarterfinal heat at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
During the end of his run in the men’s snowboardcross event, Markus lost control while mid-air and crash-landed on his backside, the force of the impact was so great that his goggles broke from his helmet as competitors boarded past him. He was unable to move for minutes after the crash, but the 30-year-old was eventually able to strap on his board and rise to his feet without help. He crossed the finish line before waving to the crowd.
According to NBC, he was then transported to a hospital where it was determined he broke the fifth cervical vertebra in his neck.
The Austrian Olympic Committee announced in a statement that it appears Markus suffered no long-term neurological damage and that he would fly back to Austria to receive further treatment.