Chloe Kim: the future

The newcomer came to dominate

Chloe+Kim%2C+the+superstar+snowboarder.
Chloe Kim, the superstar snowboarder.

Chloe Kim, the superstar snowboarder.

Photo provided by MSN

Photo provided by MSN

Chloe Kim, the superstar snowboarder.

Luke Weaver, Staff Writer

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If you don’t yet know who Chloe Kim is, it’s time for you to know. 17-year old Chloe Kim has shocked both the US and the entire world in Pyeongchang. The girl from Torrance, California practices for more than 5 hours each day, and she doesn’t see snowboarding as either exercise or work; she thinks it’s just a ton of fun. She competes in the Women’s Snowboard Halfpipe, and she showed the world who’s the new queen of the powder. She could have competed in the Sochi Olympics but was deemed too young to compete at 13. Two things set her apart: her skill and her humor. Her mid-competition tweets have gained the attention of hundreds of thousands of new followers. During her qualifying runs, she tweeted, “I had two churros today and they were pretty bomb so if you ever get nervous go eat a churro.”

The snowboard halfpipe competition consists of three runs for each competitor. In her first run, Chloe Kim smashed the leaderboard. She put up a monstrous score of 93.75 and surprised everyone, topping China’s Liu Jiayu and taking the top spot. Few outside those who enjoy and follow competitive snowboarding knew about this young lady who would soon be known as the world champion. This huge first score was good enough for first place, but as we’ve seen in the past, the lower nineties are not as safe as they seem. The Olympic Games are known for their miracle performances. The other competitors showed off their routines, but none could top Chloe Kim’s first run. The US had a particularly impressive group of snowboarders this time, and they were looking to take the podium as well, and were not going to give up yet.

As Run 2 began, some of the other boarders looked like they maybe had enough to take the first prize away from Chloe. Spain’s Queralt Castellet put down an impressive run, but it was Liu Jiayu who took advantage of Chloe Kim’s fall on her second run, as she looked to score big. Ed Leigh from the BBC Sports Network said of Jiayu’s second run, “It looked like she was looking to cement silver rather than going all in to take down Kim.” American Kelly Clark also showed up, earning a solid 81.75, good enough for bronze. The end of the second round saw Kelly Clark in third, China’s Liu Jiayu in second, and Chloe Kim with a commanding lead.

The third round always comes with so much excitement and the anticipation of a great final effort, but sadly, this was not the case. Everyone loves a showdown in the final run, but Chloe Kim’s massive score on her first run looked to be too much to overcome. Liu Jiayu’s fall on her final run eliminated one of Chloe’s best competitors. Fellow American Arielle Gold knocked off the aforementioned Clark from third place, taking the bronze medal position with an 85.75. Chloe was slotted to take her third run last, after all the others had gone. Would Chloe take an easy victory lap, getting huge air with little or no tricks, or would she go for an even better score? She would close the competition with one of the greatest runs ever seen in the halfpipe, throwing up absolutely massive jumps and intricate tricks that would surely impress the great Shaun White. In her final run, Chloe Kim posted a 98.25, and the crowd was cheering for her the entire way down the pipe. After performing so well, she ran over to her parents and her cheering fans and embraced her dad, tears in their eyes. Looks like all the trips to the slopes were worth it.

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