Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - ‘Gimme ice cream!’ says US teen Kim after halfpipe masterclass

‘Gimme ice cream!’ says US teen Kim after halfpipe masterclass

Chloe Kim of the US competes during qualification in the women's snowboard halfpipe at the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games today. AFP
Chloe Kim of the US competes during qualification in the women's snowboard halfpipe at the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games today. AFP

‘Gimme ice cream!’ says US teen Kim after halfpipe masterclass

American snowboarding sensation Chloe Kim had one thing on her mind after she nailed top score in Olympic halfpipe qualifying with a jaw-dropping display today – a well-deserved ice cream.

The high-flying 17-year-old was treated like a rock star by enthusiastic local fans because of her Korean heritage and confirmed her status as the gold medal favourite in Pyeongchang with a high total of 95.50 points.

China’s Liu Jiayu qualified second with 87.75 ahead of Japan’s Haruna Matsumoto (84.25).

“I want my ice cream!” screamed Kim after an acrobatic second run greeted with oohs and aahs by a packed crowd.

It might have been brutally cold and blustery, with a wind chill of minus 20 degrees Celsius (-4F), but Kim said: “I really like vanilla Swiss almond – but I’ll be okay with the mango sorbet.”

Looking forward to Tuesday’s final, Kim added: “I was really nervous but I’m always more nervous during qualis [qualifying] so tomorrow I can really focus on what I want to do.”

Long, bleached-blonde hair poking out from behind her visor, Kim was in a class of her own, executing a string of eye-popping spins and loop-the-loop tricks.

“I don’t even know what I did,” joked Kim, whose parents come from South Korea and who has been adopted by locals as one of their own.

“That second run felt perfect. I’ve been really trying to clean up all the little details and I think I did that so I’m really excited.”

Korean fans screaming her name jostled to take photos of Kim as she trudged to waiting journalists after her second run.

“This is the best scenario ever,” she said. “I’m so grateful to be out here and represent the US in the country my family came from.”

‘Grandma, stay warm’

Dangerous gusts that caused havoc in the women’s slopestyle final and forced the postponement of the women’s giant slalom periodically sent puffs of snow swirling across the top of the halfpipe run.

But it had little effect on the effervescent Kim.

“The pipe’s been so good so I’m thankful the conditions have been so amazing,” smiled the four-time X Games champion, who might have challenged for gold in Sochi four years ago – if she hadn’t been too young to compete.

“My goal here was to land every run I do in the contest and I’ve landed two so far, so three to go!”

Despite tearing it up in qualifying Kim admitted she wasn’t sure whether her biggest fan – her Korea-based grandmother – had been in the crowd.

But she revealed the family matriarch would be rocking some trendy sports gear if and when she turns up.

“My grandma’s in Seoul – she might be here,” Kim said.

“But I gave her some stuff I got from the opening ceremony. I gave her some Nike gear and she was really excited – so grandma, stay warm for me!”

MOST VIEWED

  • Ministry requests school opening

    The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport on Thursday said it would request a decision from Prime Minister Hun Sen to allow a small number of schools to reopen next month. Ministry spokesman Ros Soveacha said if the request is granted, higher-standard schools will reopen

  • Judge lands in court after crashing into alleged thief

    Sen Sok district police on Thursday sent a Koh Kong Provincial Court judge to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on manslaughter charges after he crashed his car into a woman riding a motorbike on Wednesday, killing her. District police chief Hour Meng Vang told The

  • Gov’t to boost Siem Reap tourism

    The Ministry of Tourism released the results of an inter-ministerial committee meeting concerning Siem Reap province’s Tourism Development Master Plan for 2020-2035 on Wednesday, revealing the government’s plan to improve the overall tourist landscape there. The meeting was attended by Minister of Tourism

  • ‘On the offensive’: Cambodia to load up on loans to stimulate economy

    As the dust settles on the economy, Cambodia comes to grips with what needs to be done to turn the economy around, starting with a big shopping list for credit ‘We are going on the offensive,” Vongsey Vissoth, Ministry of Economy and Finance permanent secretary

  • Government set to make up for cancelled April holiday

    The government is set to make up for a five-day Khmer New Year holiday late this month or early next month. The holiday was earlier cancelled due to the onset of Covid-19. The announcement is expected on Friday as the government is studying a range

  • Crumbling prices, rent ruffle condo segment

    The prolonged decline in international arrivals to Cambodia intensified by renewed Covid-19 fears has driven down condominium sales prices and rental rates in Phnom Penh, a research report said. CBRE Cambodia, the local affiliate of US commercial real estate services and investment firm CBRE Group

  • Over $3M in traffic fines collected in two months

    Traffic police officers collected over $3 million in fines throughout the Kingdom during the past two months when officers strictly enforced the law in accordance with a May sub-decree, officials said. As incentives, law enforcement officers received between 200,000 and two million riel ($50 to $500) each. The figures

  • More than 10,000 workers suspended

    More than 10,000 workers at 18 factories in Svay Rieng province have been suspended because of Covid-19, said provincial deputy governor Ros Pharith. Home to 11 special economic zones, Pharith said Svay Rieng has not been spared as the pandemic takes a toll on the global economy. “There

  • Nod given for school exams

    The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport announced that State-run higher educational institutions can hold examinations to end the academic year, while private schools can organise grade 9 and grade 12 examinations at their premises for two days. However, private institutions have to take measures to prevent

  • Kingdom’s exports to US mushroom 25.94% in first five months to $2.4B

    Though Cambodia’s exports to other countries have been stalled amid the evolving Covid-19 environment, the Kingdom’s shipments to the US were worth 25.94 per cent more in the first five months of this year than they were in the year-ago period. Bilateral trade between