Park City Sisters Competing For Great Britain In 2022 Winter Olympics
BEIJING — More Utah skiers are competing in Beijing Saturday night, including a pair of sisters from Park City.
They grew up in Park City, but at these Olympic Games, they’re competing for Great Britain.
There are several athletes in these Games that have dual citizenship, which gives them the option to compete for more than one country.
For Izzy and Zoe Atkin, they were fortunate enough, and talented enough, to choose between the United States or Great Britain. And their decision has worked out great for them both.
As young kids, Izzy and Zoe Atkin would spend winter weekends with their parents, escaping the hustle and bustle of Boston for the slopes in Maine.
“Well, our parents are skiers, and we would drive four hours every weekend — every Friday and every Sunday — so we grew up skiing,” Zoe said.
“My parents wanted to do something on the weekends in the winter, not just like sit around in Boston where it’s cold and there’s snow, but you can’t do anything with the snow,” Izzy said.
The Atkins sisters moved from Boston to Utah when Zoe was 9 and Izzy was 14, at a moment when they wanted to take their training to the next level. They wanted to take advantage of the world-class facilities that Utah has to offer.
“We took a few trips out here to Park City during school vacations, and just kind of realized, like, how much better the skiing was,” Izzy said.
“These facilities bring in athletes as well, like, we moved here because the facilities are so good,” Zoe said.
As their talents grew in freestyle skiing, the attention on the two sisters grew as well — and a lot of that came from Team Great Britain.
Zoe and Izzy’s dad, he’s from the UK, and the girls hold dual citizenship.
Choosing to represent Team GB is something they’re proud of.
“I have never regretted my choice,” Izzy said. “We are in the lucky position to be able to choose, you know, which country to represent, or which team to be on. Yeah, I feel pretty lucky to be a part of Team GB.”
It’s also paying off for the two. Zoe’s making her first Olympic appearance, but has already enjoyed success at the international level. She made her first podium in a World Cup halfpipe event in 2019 when she was just 16. More recently, Zoe won Bronze at the 2021 Freestyle Ski and Snowboard World Championships.
Her goal for her first Winter Games in Beijing? They’re pretty modest.
“For me, it’s always been a really big dream just to go to the Olympics, so I’m really excited for that,” she said. “Biggest goals would be, like, landing my new runs at X Games and the Olympics, and then I’ll be happy.”
Izzy, who competes in the big air and slopestyle events, has already experienced an Olympic medal-winning moment in PyeongChang four years ago.
Of course, she would want another in Beijing. But her real golden moment? It’s sharing the Olympic spotlight with her younger sister.
“My dream goal is probably just experiencing Beijing and the Olympics with Zoe, my sister,” Izzy said.
“Oh yeah, I forgot about that,” Zoe said laughing. “She’s gonna be there, too.”
“Just like, a once in a lifetime kind of opportunity,” Izzy said. “The fact that we’re both gonna get to experience that together.”
“I want to change my answer,” Zoe said laughing.
Izzy was supposed to start competing Saturday night in the women’s freestyle ski slopestyle event, but it was rescheduled for Sunday.
Zoe will be competing in the freestyle ski halfpipe event, which begins on Wednesday.