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

  • Tourists urged not to skip trip

    The Ministry of Tourism has called on international tourists not to cancel trips to Cambodia, but urged them to adhere to several dos and don’ts when arriving in the Kingdom during the Covid-19 pandemic. The ministry released an eight-point instruction manual on Wednesday published

  • The taxman cometh – Cambodia’s capital gains tax casts the net on individual taxpayers

    In a country where only limited personal income tax existed, the new taxation law beginning January 1, 2021, will make taxpayers out of Cambodians, whether they are ready for it or not About two years ago, a little known amendment was made to Article 7 of the Law

  • Cambodian-American gets Star Trek treatment

    Kevin Ung, a Cambodian-American whose family escaped genocide during the Khmer Rouge’s reign of terror, was recently selected from thousands of applicants to participate in the Television Academy Foundation’s inaugural 2020 Star Trek Command Training Programme, a course intended to give hands-on filmmaking experience

  • Cambodia seeks to be transport hub

    Cambodia is working on several fronts to modernise its transport infrastructure and services, concentrating on opening new international gates to relieve and balance traffic congestion at its borders, Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol said on Thursday. This is part of the Kingdom’

  • PM: West unfair to Cambodia

    Prime Minister Hun Sen released a message celebrating the International Day of Peace on Monday, saying that some major powers and western countries had been systemically cooperating to put political pressure on Cambodia as they did in the 1970s and 1980s. Hun Sen said pressuring

  • First ‘mobile kitchen’ in Cambodia enters service

    A catering company recently rolled out Cambodia’s first “mobile kitchen” – a $50,000 container capable of serving up to 200 people at a time. The kitchen is the brainchild of Seng Hok Heng Catering Services. At 4.4m-high, 6.8m-long and 2.4m-wide (expandable to 6.8m), the kitchen is equipped