Pyeongchang, Feb 13: United States’ snowboard sensation Chloe Kim stormed to victory in the women’s halfpipe at the PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games here on Tuesday.
Kim, born to South Korean immigrants in the United States, won her first Olympic gold medal at Phoenix Snow Park, with the top score of 98.25 points, reports Yonhap news agency.
There are three runs in the final round, and each competitor’s best score determines the final standings. Kim had 93.75 points from her first run and 41.50 points from her second run.
With her victory, Kim is now the first woman to win a medal at both the Olympic Winter Games and Winter Youth Olympic Games in snowboard. The 17-year-old also became the youngest American woman to win an Olympic gold medal in a snowboard event.
Making her Winter Games debut, Kim was dominant from the qualifying round on Monday. She was the only one among 24 contestants to score more than 90 points in both qualifying runs. In the finals, she was also the only rider among 12 competitors to top the 90-point mark.
“When I landed and realized that I’ve won the first (gold medal), words that came into my mind were mom, dad and family,” she said.
“I don’t know how I’m going to celebrate tonight. When I go home back to the US, probably my mom would throw a little party for family and friends.”
Liu Jiayu took silver with 89.75 points, becoming the first Chinese athlete to win a medal in an Olympic snowboard event. She was followed by Arielle Gold of the U.S. with 85.75 points.
Kelly Clark of the US took fourth place with 83.50 points. She was looking to become the first snowboarder to win a medal at four Winter Games.