Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

Winter Olympics 2018: Chloe Kim claims gold medal but father Jong Jin wins the internet by being ‘the American dream’

Jong Jin Kim cheered on his 17-year-old daughter with a ‘Go Chloe’ sign and believes the special moment they shared together represents the real American dream

Jack de Menezes
Tuesday 13 February 2018 08:47 GMT
Chloe Kim and her father feature in a Super Bowl 2018 'Best of U.S' ad

Chloe Kim made headlines on Tuesday by winning 2018 Winter Olympics gold at just 17 years old in the women’s snowboard halfpipe final, but it was her father who stole the show after becoming “the American dream”.

American Kim, who is of South Korean heritage, was one of the big rising names in Pyeongchang to keep an eye out for, and the snowboarding protégé delivered on her promise as she won the halfpipe final with three brilliant runs.

An emotional Kim soaked up the adulation of her fans after claiming gold, and quickly rushed to embrace her family who were watching on the slopes.

Jong Jin Kim cheers on his daughter Chloe in the Winter Olympics women's snowboard halfpipe final

But it was her father, Jong Jin Kim, who won the adulation of the public as he appeared with a sign reading “Go Chloe” in true dad-style support, and when she was finally crowned Olympic champion, he was heard shouting “American dream!” while pointing at himself with a beaming smile on his face.

He later said: “When I came to the United States, this was my American hope. Now, this is my American dream.

“We all worked so hard. I can take a break now,” Jong Jin added in Korean. “We worked so hard. Now she’s going to go to college. She’s a student, and she’s got to go study hard. Snowboarding is what you do when you’re young. Who knows how much longer she’s going to keep snowboarding?

“I just want her to study hard. She’s got to go have a good experience in college. I just hope she lives as a happy girl. I just wish she was a little nicer to me! She’s such a teenage girl.

“She can do what she wants to do. We’ve been so close for so long, now I can take a break.”

Television footage showed Jong Jin cheering on his daughter as she went for a final run to light up the Olympics, having already bagged the gold medal. Not content with her score of 93.75, Kim went for broke and performed her trademark back-to-back 1080s – the move that only her and two-time men’s gold medallist Shaun White have ever completed.

Becoming the first woman to land the trick at the Winter Olympics, Kim was given a huge score of 98.25, sealing her victory over China’s Lie Jiayu by more than eight points.

Yet Kim even found time to crack jokes on social media between the runs, tweeting: “Wish I finished my breakfast sandwich but my stubborn self decided not to and now I’m getting hangry.”

“I am a little overwhelmed,” said Kim. “It’s the best outcome I could have asked for, it’s been such a long journey.

“This whole experience has been insane. You hear so much about the Olympics but actually being a part of it is a completely different story. I am so fortunate to be able to go through it.

She produced two trademark 1080s on her final run (Getty)

“To share my story with the world has been amazing.

“I knew if I went home with the gold medal knowing I could do better I wasn’t going to be very satisfied,” she added.

Chloe Kim burst into tears after winning the women's halfpipe final at the Winter Olympics (Getty)

“I did put down a really good run (in the first run) but I was like – ‘I can do better than that’.

“I knew that I wanted to do that third run, I wanted to do the back-to-back 10s, go bigger and better.”

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in