Farrington's parents can fly with a little help from their friends

14 February 2014 18:53
Some Golden bling for Kaitlyn
Some Golden bling for Kaitlyn -
GEPA Pictures

The parents of halfpipe snowboarder Kaitlyn Farrington might never have seen their daughter compete live at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games without a little help from their friends - and the 10,000 residents of Sun Valley, Idaho.

In the lead-up to the Games, when it became clear that Farrington, 24, would be selected for a USA team that boasts Kelly Clark (USA), the most succcesful snowboarder of all time, her hometown began raising money to fly her parents to Russia.

“They had snowboarding boots around town,” explained her mother, Suz, to the Olympic News Service on Wednesday.

“With a picture of the three of us that said, 'Help send Kaitlyn's parent's to Russia.' They put it out on the radio. It's a small community of only 10,000 people and everybody was very helpful.”

Farrington was brought up with her older sister Jessalyn in an environment not obviously conducive to snowboarding.

“I grew up on a ranch in Bellevue (Idaho) and made it all the way to the Olympics in Russia,” she said. “If you believe in yourself, that's half of it.”

Luckily for her, there was a ski resort close by.

“She started skiing at the age of 4 and switched to snowboarding at age 9,” said Suz, adding that it was “just awesome” to be able to see her daughter join Clark in Wednesday's halfpipe final with the highest score of the semifinal – and finally beating her team mate and the rest of the 12-ladies-final to grab a well-deserved Gold.