- Written by Ben Jacklet
- Category: Olympic Style Events
- Published: February 12, 2014
- Last Updated: February 14, 2014
Fun-loving Kaitlyn Farrington caught stylish air, stomped all her landings and shimmied her way onto the podium after winning an Olympic gold medal in the halfpipe.
Torah Bright of Australia won the silver and American Kelly Clark won the bronze, followed by American Hannah Teter in fourth.
Farrington, 24, grew up on a cattle ranch in Idaho, riding for the Sun Valley Snowboard team. She broke through into the upper echelons of snowboarding in 2010 as the overall champion of the Dew Tour, but before that her first break came at the age of 16, when X Games champion Barrett Christy recognized her talent during summer training on Mount Hood and hooked her up with her first sponsor, Gnu Snowboards.
As a kid Farrington attended multiple summer sessions at Windells Camp at Timberline and later returned as a visiting athlete to inspire campers. She has also trained at the 22-foot halfpipe run by High Cascade Snowboard Camp at Timberline. Her first big FIS slopestyle win as a high school senior came at Mount Bachelor in October 2007, and her first big halfpipe win was at Mount Hood Meadows in February 2008. Even with all that success she kept her sense of self-deprecating humor, describing herself on her Instgram profile as "pro snowboarder aka twerp!"
Farrington spent a couple of weeks on Mount Hood this summer with High Cascade, and her Instagram pics from that visit show plenty of good times camping in the Cascades, traveling to the Oregon Coast to do some surfing and ripping the slushy halfpipe up at Timberline.
Silver medalist Torah Bright of Australia also trains on Mount Hood in the summer, as does bronze medalist Kelly Clark.
The 30-year-old Clark caught the biggest air of the day in her second run after crashing on the lip of the pipe in her first run. Her bronze in Russia is her third Olympic medal.
Like Farrington, Clark is a long-time regular at Mount Hood in the summer. She was up at High Cascade in July training on the 22-foot halfpipe built by Pat Malendoski, with a dedicated rope tow and an air bar for extra-large jumps.
Here's a Youtube video of Kaitlyn competing in the X Games leading up to the Olympics. Her winning run today in Russia was similarly exuberant, and even smoother.