Crowdfunding hits the podium in Sochi

Kim Lamarre

Kim Lamarre

It is only fitting that the first crowdfunded athlete to win an Olympic medal participates in an event which, much like crowdfunding, is relatively new on the world stage.

Canadian Kim Lamarre won bronze in the women’s slopestyle. This is the freestyle skiing event’s maiden Olympic run.

Lamarre’s campaign is on RallyMe, a site specifically dedicated to crowdfunding athletes at all levels.  Her campaign is still active until February 26.  People wishing to support her can follow this link.

Her medal showing is the culmination of a difficult several years that including multiple ACL tears and several lengthy recovery stints.  With her injury history and few top-3 showings on her resume, Canadian officials dropped her from the team.  “We kind of looked at it and went, ‘You know, look, it’s going to be tough for you to come back. We need to focus on the medal-potential people,’ ” Canadian team leader Peter Judge said to Yahoo Sports.

Lamarre persisted, and paid for her own training and travel.  After a podium finish at a Dew Tour event in December, she was brought back to the team.

Both Lamarre and her teammate, gold medalist Dara Howell, credited the influence of former teammate Sarah Burke, who passed away just over two years ago in a training accident. Burke was a vocal advocate for the sport’s inclusion in these games.  “I always see her smile in my mind,” Lamarre said to Yahoo Sports.