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Iouri Podladtchikov wins Olympic halfpipe gold: Who is iPod? (photos)

Iouri Podladtchikov wins gold in Olympic halfpipe event
Iouri Podladtchikov wins gold in Olympic halfpipe event
Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images

Iouri Podladtchikov captured the gold in the Olympic halfpipe and Shaun White placed fourth. Or in snowboarder speak it was iPod who dethroned the Flying Tomato. Everyone around the world knows Shaun White and his active participation in the halfpipe, but who is Iouri Podladtchikov? According to the Sporting News on Tuesday, the Switzerland athlete actually was born in Moscow, but grew up in Switzerland.

While the fans of the sport give names to the athletes, it appears that Iouri Podladtchikov is best known as “iPod.” A play of letters from his name, the term has nothing to do with the gadgets produced by the Apple company. Offering up the simple nickname has everyone, no matter where the fans live, know it is the popular snowboarder. He’s famous in the snowboarding community for the trick called YOLO and he loves to take risks.

The most intriguing thing about iPod? Well, that has to be his upbringing. Looking at the risks he takes in the air and then learning about his parents is quite interesting. His parents aren't snowboarding fans. Instead both are mathematicians, and his father is a professor of geophysics. However, they support his endeavors and were excited to hear about his gold medal.

Another interesting fact about iPod? He’s now a gold medal winner. After finding out that he was the best in the world he got a big hug from Shaun White and started celebrating. It was a bitter sweet moment in world of halfpipe, but iPod proved he could handle the course with his epic run.

Take a look at the photo slideshow of Iouri Podladtchikov winning moves. Athletes need to be fearless to twist and turn in the air like this!