Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Koreans go ga-ga for American boarder Kim at Olympics



Koreans go ga-ga for American boarder Kim at Olympics

Koreans go ga-ga for American boarder Kim at Olympics

At just 17, American snowboarding sensation Chloe Kim looks set to become the face of the Pyeongchang Games – no pressure then!

The Californian girl with Korean parents got a taste of Olympic-mania today when a news conference turned into a rugby scrum as the world’s media clambered to get a piece of the gold medal hope.

In the absence of a truly transcendent athlete such as figure skater Kim Yuna, South Koreans are looking to claim Kim as one of their own.

“It is very nerve-racking,” halfpipe star Kim told reporters. “I think this is the craziest place I’ve been with all these cameras.

“I was warned there was going to be a lot of press,” she added with a nervous smile.

“Competing at my first Olympics in the country where my parents came from is pretty insane. It’s kind of a crazy coincidence.”

Kim, who loves the beach, music and the mall almost as much as she does busting out her eye-popping snowboarding tricks, was so good at 13 she might have won gold at the Sochi Olympics.

Two years under the minimum age requirement then, fate decreed she would get her chance in South Korea, meaning her biggest fan – her grandmother, who enjoys boasting about Chloe’s exploits over tea – will be able to cheer her on for the first time.

“I grew up in a very Korean environment,” said Kim, her blond-streaked hair tied in a bun.

“My parents are very proud of Korea and there are lots of Koreans in LA, so I don’t feel completely isolated from the culture,” she added.

“I always ate Korean food and I feel like I grew up with both cultures. My parents are both really excited to be here and my grandma is out here cheering me on so it will be a really fun experience for the whole family.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Chinese tourists 2.0 – Coming anytime soon?

    Regional tourism is grappling with the absence of the prolific travellers and big spenders – the Chinese tourists. Cambodia, which has welcomed over two million Chinese tourists before Covid-19, is reeling from the economic loss despite being the first to fully open last November ‘To put

  • PM reflects on shoe throwing: Free speech or act of violence?

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on May 17 questioned whether a man who threw a shoe at him while he was in the US was exercising freedom of expression or if it was an act of hostility. Hun Sen was referring to an incident last week when

  • Hun Sen: Stop Russia sanctions

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said sanctions against Russia as a result of its military offensive in Ukraine should be stopped as they have produced no tangible results, and predicted that a global food crisis would ensue in 2023 as a consequence. Speaking to an audience at

  • Prime Minister Hun Sen warmly welcomed by president Biden

    Prime Minister Hun Sen, as ASEAN chair, and other ASEAN leaders were warmly welcomed by US president Joe Biden as the ASEAN-US summit May 12-13 kicked off today in Washington. “This evening, I welcomed ASEAN leaders to the White House for the first time in

  • Prime Minister Hun Sen invites US president to attend summit in Cambodia

    Prime Minister Hun Sen personally invited US President Joe Biden to attend the ASEAN-US Summit which is set to be held in Cambodia in November, as ASEAN and the US are expected to upgrade their strategic partnership to a ‘comprehensive strategic partnership’, according to Prime

  • Pub Street on the cards for Battambang

    The Battambang Provincial Authority has announced that it is considering establishing a Pub Street in the area around the heritage buildings in Battambang town in a bid to attract more tourists. Battambang provincial governor Sok Lou told The Post that the establishment of a Pub