If there’s a teen competing in your event, just drop out, you have no chance at bringing home the gold. All the effort you put into your journey to becoming an Olympian is time wasted. Why? Because that teen you’ve never heard of who’s been alive for less time than you’ve been perfecting your sport is going to win and there’s nothing you can do about it. If there’s one thing any adult knows about kids, it’s that they’re indestructible. Did your kid just crash head-first off his bike with no helmet? No worries, probably just a minor flesh wound. Kids are the perfect candidate for these events that require insane flips and tricks. Anyone over 18 knows that one misstep and you’ll probably tear an ACL and your season’s over. Not these teens though, and after what we’ve seen so far Team USA needs to throw all their money and training resources into developing teenagers to bring home the gold.
Case study #1: Red Gerard, 17
You could have told me this kid was anywhere between the ages of 12 and 17 and I’d believe you. That NBC Olympic profile shot of him above looks like an ad spot straight out of whatever kid’s show The Disney Channel is about to pump out. Luckily, Red’s not hawking kid’s shows on Disney, he’s busy doing this…
I won’t do slopestyle the disservice of me trying to explain why that was a gold medal run, I’m no pro snowboarder, and I’d more than likely shatter a minimum of two crucial body parts if I attempted even one of those tricks. If you watched the entire event however (or any slopestyle from the X-Games or Sochi 2014), you’d know this looked way too easy. There were X-games winners and Olympic medalists in the field, and none of them put down a run even remotely this smooth. He made it look so easy that he actually looked bored, as if he’s going to dump this sport and go pursue some other gold medal in the next Olympic cycle.
Case Study #2: Chloe Kim, 17
Did Chloe Kim win gold too? Nope, not yet a least, but it might as well be a formality at this point because she’s very likely going home with the gold for Women’s Half Pipe later tonight (8:30 EST/5:30 PST for anyone watching) after a 1st place finish in the qualification round.
The scoring for half pipe was changed after 2010, but to put Kim’s scores into perspective, a score of 91.75 won the gold in Sochi 2014. Chloe Kim essentially laid down a gold medal winning run during her practice round. A round where the goal is to just make sure you put together one run where you don’t fall so you can compete in the Final. Then, just to rub it in everyone’s face, she put together an even bigger run. “She was probably just really focused”, “Clearly trying too hard in qualifications” you say? Nope, was busy trying to get her hands on some ice cream.
This is the type of shit that drives other athletes mad. While they’re busy training, doing yoga, eating vegan-only diets, etc., this 17 year old girl is asking how to get a hold of some delicious ice-based cream in-between her gold medal-worthy Olympic runs.
All I have to say is I’m glad these twerps are on Team USA because it’s a bad look to have your world class athletes losing to kids who weren’t even old enough to drive themselves to their Olympic qualifying events. I, for one, welcome our new children overlords.
Update (2/12, 9:30PM): Chloe Kim did indeed win the gold medal and it wasn’t even close. Winning run score of 98.25.