Chloe Kim Wins Gold In Olympic Snowboarding's Halfpipe

Yuzuru Hanyu is the defending champion from Sochi

Gold, who dislocated her right shoulder during training for the Sochi Olympics and didn't compete then barely made the 12-woman final, brushed off a fall during her first run and stomped an 85.75 on her third run.

But the 17-year-old delivered on the biggest stage, earning her first Olympic gold medal in women's snowboard halfpipe on Tuesday morning in South Korea.

"I got third that year, and I was like, 'Let's go the salon, '" she recalled.

"Someone said to me, 'congrats on your Olympic gold medal, ' and I don't even understand it myself when I say that so I think I need some time to myself because right now, I'm very excited".

"Now that I think about it, I'm really glad I wasn't able to go", Kim told NBC Olympics a year ago.

She still improved her score to 98.25 despite how "hangry" she was.

"I'm a little overwhelmed", she said, after composing herself.

Chloe Kim's dad has been instrumental to her career. At the end of the day, I'm so grateful that I get to be out here and represent the USA in the country that my family came from.

"But, equally, I was so lucky to still be able to go through the whole qualification process when I was 13".

It's been a long road for the Kim family, and one that's brought them full circle in the most satisfying of ways.

Amid Olympic thaw, Pence says allies united in isolating N. Korea
Individual athletes were invited to participate as "neutrals" if they could prove they had not used performance-enhancing drugs. But North Korea's record on human rights and the growing threat from its nuclear weapons program appeared out of mind.

Kim turned her coronation into an exclamation point, stomping a pair of 1080 spins (three complete turns), then practically diving into a hug with American teammate and bronze medal victor Arielle Gold to seal a moment four years in the making.

Their paths first crossed in the lift line at Mammoth Mountain when Kim was eight. She was an easy favorite going into the event. "It was pretty cute".

In 2011, Clark became the first woman ever to land a frontside 1080 while Kim was still in elementary school.

She drilled her opening set, throwing in a 1080 - basically, three twists high above the pipe - before following it with a pair of flips (or "corks"). Sports Business Journal declared in January: "You'd be hard-pressed to create a more promising brand spokeswoman in a lab". She has exceeded every one.

In that moment, the lucrative Super Bowl endorsement deals, global fame and geopolitical significance of her potential success will all fade away. For Clark, 34, this was a chance to add to her medal collection.

"The thing about snowboarding is everyone has their own unique style", Kim says.

"I'm still looking up to the big screen to see the result".

But deep down, she knows where the real thanks belonged.

"It doesn't look the same; everyone has their own special thing that they do and I think that's really attractive".

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