Snowboarding Programs

Athlete Spotlight: Kelly Clark

by
USSA
2011-07-28 00:00
 

A two-time Olympic medalist - she won gold in 2002 and bronze in 2010 - Kelly Clark is a natural innovator and dominant force in snowboarding. Leading the way in competition for her fellow female competitors, Clark always manages to push the envelope and top herself from one season to the next. In 2011 Clark continued to bridge the gap between men's and women's halfpipe as she stomped the first 1080 in women's competition history.

Name: Kelly Clark
Sport: Halfpipe snowboarding
Current location: Mammoth Lakes, CA
How/when did you decide you wanted to compete in halfpipe?: An opportunity came up to go to a mountain school that was based around competing. That was in 9th grade. I really enjoyed it and have stuck with it ever since.
What has been your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: There have been many great accomplishments in my career. Some of my favorites have been winning the U.S. Open five times- more than any other women, landing the first 1080 in competition and the other big one was my bronze in Vancouver. I think you appreciate things the more it costs you. Knowing how hard I worked and what it took to get back on the podium [bronze 2002] at the Olympics makes me appreciate that bronze more than anything else I have accomplished.
What are your goals for next season: I would like to continue to have fun, do well and progress my sport. X Games, World Championships and the U.S. Open are on my mind as well.
What is your favorite snow destination: I like going to Japan. It is a fun destination to start with and then once you add the snow it is the ultimate. They get a ton of snow and it is never crowded - always a good time!
What is your favorite non-snow destination: The beach. I love the ocean and I love surfing.
If you weren't a professional athlete, where would you be: Not sure, I like to think that I would be doing something else that I love.
What was the time you've been most scared in your life: Seeing a friend get caught in a slide. Scary for a bit then she got spit out the bottom so it was a short, but definitely scary moment.
What is your biggest vice: Coffee or ice cream.
What is your biggest pet peeve: Having your windshield wipers on without any rain.
What is your advice to others who want to follow in your footsteps: Figure out who you are apart from what you do. Know that nothing is impossible and always keep it fun.