Teenager Seamus O’Connor will become Ireland’s first-ever Olympic competitor in the snowboard halfpipe and slopestyle events in Sochi.
Seamus, 16, was born into a diverse family – his mother is from Russia, his father grew up in England, and his grandparents are Irish.
When the International Olympic Committee (IOC) chose Sochi for the 2014 Olympic Winter Games, Seamus’ father Kevin made the following suggestion to his then nine-year old son, already a snowboard prodigy:
“He thought it’d be a great idea to represent Ireland, ride in Russia, be born in America – he thought it all came together perfectly,” Seamus told the BBC.
Being only 16 years old, Seamus said he is proud and honoured to represent Ireland.
Stephen Martin Ireland’s Chef de Mision said “Over the past 3 years along with Snowsport Ireland we have been monitoring Seamus progress through youth world level cpmpetitions and we are all delighted he has qualified for slope style and half pipe in Sochi. We had dinner last night and Seamus and his coach Sam Wilkinson are looking forward to testing out the venue today”
Heres a link to the bbc sport magazine piece on Seamus O’Connor