“The third time was a charm” is an understatement of what Japanese snowboarder Ayumu Hirano accomplished by winning the men’s halfpipe event at the Beijing Winter Olympics on Friday, February 11. After a mesmerizing first run, the judges seemed to undercut Hirano’s second run, leading to an outrage by the live play-by-play commentators and online Twitter spectators.
His third and final run was a sequence of spectacular 1440s and a 1220 to become the first ever Japanese to win a gold medal in the event, and the first Olympian to successfully land a triple cork 1440 in competition, completing the redemption of his consecutive silver medal finishes in prior years.
On Twitter, we look at how people reacted in the region and beyond:
“Ayumu Hirano, a big congratulations on your gold medal!!! I was on the slopes but I really want to watch the run, so I asked the staff and they let me see it on TV, resulting in me halving an epic laugh.”
Justice! What a run by Ayumu Hirano for gold.— Jackie Spiegel (@jackiespiegel93) February 11, 2022
“Woke up to see Ayumu Hirano won the gold medal is such an uplifting feeling. Congratulations.”
JUSTICE FOR AYUMU HIRANO!!!!!!! 🥇🥇🥇— David Murrell (@davidmurrellv) February 11, 2022
“Snowboarding. Ayumu Hirano, congratulations on your gold medal. Personally, I was very touched to see that Shaun White, who is a little different in age, was stroking his head and congratulating him. The man who put snowboarding on the world stage, and together with the man who carried the sports on his back – I think only those two can understand this special moment.”
スノーボード。平野歩夢選手、金メダルおめでとうございます。僕個人としては、年齢がひとまわり違うショーン・ホワイト選手が頭を撫でて祝福していたのがとても印象的でした。スノーボードの世界を引っ張ってきた男と、それを背負っていく男しかわからない特別な瞬間だったのではないかと思います。— 越前屋俵太 (@echizenya_hyota) February 11, 2022
“Japanese snowboarding representative, Ayumu Hirano, congratulations on your gold medal. I’m so glad I can draw this Olympic Winner Series in this way. I saw the broadcast live, and your third run was a masterpiece.”
ホント3回目の滑りは圧巻でしたね🔥#平野歩夢#ハーフパイプ#イラスト#スノーボード#人物イラスト#北京オリンピック2022 pic.twitter.com/El5sVt7t6d— もりらんくる＠イラスト (@morirancrujapan) February 11, 2022
Shaun White gave #gold medalist Ayumu Hirano a big hug after his final mixed zone interview.
“Let’s go skating sometime,” he said. #Beijing2022 pic.twitter.com/GT061TTwf9— Davis VanOpdorp (@Davis_VanOpdorp) February 11, 2022
Kaishu Hirano: “ ‘I really thought my brother should get the gold medal.’ Let’s get the medal together as brothers at the Milano Cortina Games 4 years from now.”
JUSTICE FOR AYUMU HIRANO. I was gonna go postal if they made him silver A G A I N but they finally got it right PUT SOME RESPECT ON HIS NAME 🇯🇵 #BEIJING2022— ᴮᴱSierraes⁷💜❄ (@atiny_yoongi) February 11, 2022
Ayumu Hirano gets JUSTICE! Congrats to him and Japan for the Gold Medal! DESERVED! Also big congrats to Shaun White, dude did his best in his final competition in the Olympics and was so glad to watch his final run! #Olympics2022— CrazyMtch42 (@CrazyMtch42) February 11, 2022
Update: The man on my TV now says justice has been achieved Ayumu Hirano! I am happy!— Diana Moskovitz (@DianaMoskovitz) February 11, 2022