Sochi Winter Olympics 2014: Swedish skier Henrik Harlaut barely completes run after baggy trousers ‘get caught up in skis’

Athlete later insisted he always wears his trousers like that and ‘doesn’t find it difficult’

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The Independent Online

With his dreadlocks, trousers round his knees and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle gloves, slopestyle skier Henrik Harlaut may have made a bigger impression in Sochi with his choice of dress than his actual performance.

The popular Swedish athlete ended up placing sixth in the men’s final for his event this morning – but got off to a spectacularly bad start on his first run when it appeared his baggy ski trousers “got caught up in his skis”.

BBC commentators Ed Leigh, Tim Warwood and Murray Buchan watched on with evident shock as Harlaut came tumbling down on the course’s final jump, with skis, hair and trousers seemingly all over the place.

While it looked at a number of points as though the sportsman would be left red-faced and entirely trouserless, he was saved from embarrassment by his suspenders.

The 22-year-old jumped up straight after his sensational wipe-out, and ended up completing solid runs of 83.20 and 84.40.

Despite appearances, Harlaut told reporters he was 'comfortable' with his 'hang loose' style. 'I don't find it difficult,' he said

He later told reporters that his “hang loose” style had not been as much of an impediment as it looked, and said of his trousers: “I don't find it difficult. I've skied like that the past 10 years. It's been (my style) for awhile. I'm pretty comfortable like that.”

In terms of the actual slopestyle scores, the event ended up as a clean sweep for the US, with Joss Christensen, Gus Kenworthy and Nicholas Goepper taking gold, silver and bronze.

Harlaut’s fellow Scandinavian Andreas Haatveit (Norway) just missed out on a podium place, while Great Britain’s James Woods came in a respectable fifth.