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He oughta apply for the IOC's Official Weed Supplier sponsorship.

Olympic champion snowboarder Rebagliati builds marijuana business

Canadian Olympic champion snowboarder Ross Rebagliati is building a firm to brand and licence the substance that briefly saw him lose his Nagano 1998 gold medal - marijuana.

The former athlete, who after winning the giant slalom was disqualified as tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) was found in his system but later regained his Winter Games medal as the drug was not on the banned list, is hoping the ironically named "Ross' Gold" firm will grow with the interest in medical marijuana following the Canadian Government's move to commercialise production in April.

"I don't want it to be like Nagano where it was two minutes one day and then it defined me for the next 16 years," said Rebagliati, whose company has a market value of about $38.4 million (£22.4 million/€28.2 million).

"This is something that's here to stay.

"I was waiting for a long time to use, or to play, the hand that was dealt to me in Nagano."

Rebagliati aims to grow his business based on his reputation as an elite athlete and a cannabis "aficionado" in the wake of the "dot-bong" boom, or "green rush", which has seen hundreds of companies applying to Health Canada for licences to grow and market medical marijuana.

He plans to licence the Ross' Gold brand name to a medical-marijuana distributor that will market pot as platinum, gold, silver or bronze "podium levels", according to the level of THC, but has also begun to do business on the over the counter market and believes the company has a future.

"Only the strongest will survive," Rebagliati said.

"We feel we're one of them."


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