This Olympian Chose To Represent Mexico To Honor His Father’s Roots

Meet Robby Franco. He’s a skier competing at this year’s Winter Olympics.

Franco is one of a handful of athletes representing Team Mexico in Pyeongchang.

His goal? To win Mexico its first medal at a Winter Olympics.

Born and raised in California, Franco decided to represent Mexico to honor his father, who is from Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.

Franco grew up in Camino, a small town between Sacramento and South Lake Tahoe. He told Marca.com that he fell in love with skiing during family ski trips to Lake Tahoe. After honing his craft for years, Franco eventually turned pro during his teens and moved to Colorado to focus on training. Franco, who holds dual citizenship, represented the United States until 2014, when he made the switch to Mexico.

Since choosing to rep Mexico, the 24-year-old has reconnected with family in Jalisco…

… visited Teotihuacan near Mexico City…

… and even trained without snow.

So, what exactly does Franco do? He competes in slope style, a skiing event where athletes make their way downhill while doing tricks on various obstacles, like rails and takeoffs.

Here’s a trick from a rail:

CREDIT: Spencer Davies / YouTube

And one from a takeoff:

CREDIT: Nick Franco / YouTube

Aaaand here’s a trick in slo-mo:

Just day dreaming about catching some air again! #tbt

A post shared by Robby Franco (@robbyfrancoskiing) on

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CREDIT: Broad City / Comedy Central

A top 30 skier, Franco says his goal is not just to bring Mexico its first Winter Olympics medal, but to inspire others to try the sport.

“I thought if I could be a spotlight to encourage other athletes from Mexico, to learn to ski, to pursue this if the Olympics is your dream. Do what I did. Follow it,” said Franco to the Sacramento Bee.

The Men’s Ski Slopestyle competition kicks off on Sunday, February 18.

People Went In On Will Smith Not Knowing The Words To 'La Bamba' And He Clapped Back


People Went In On Will Smith Not Knowing The Words To ‘La Bamba’ And He Clapped Back

willsmith / Instagram

Will Smith has no shame when it comes to Instagram. One minute he’s posting about his days as the Fresh Prince, and the next he’s giving his followers inspirational life lessons. But when he’s on vacation, he goes all out. By that we mean, he turns up the nerdy dad routine and delivers comedic moments that will make you cringe. Case in point, his recent vacation to the Cayman Islands and his live rendition of “La Bamba.”

Will Smith thought it would be funny to join the Pandemix steel drum band for their rendition of “La Bamba.”

As you can hear, it’s pretty terrible — but also kind of hilarious. He said it himself: “imagine that in my bad singing voice.”

Smith clearly didn’t know the words to this iconic Mexican folk song, or maybe he was just playing a joke on all of us. Of course people had to voice their opinions in the comments section.

In a follow-up Instagram post, Smith sang “La Bamba” again.

Smith started the video, in Spanish, saying, “Many of you wrote in the comments section that I didn’t know the words to ‘La Bamba.'” He then went in and sang the song at the top of his lungs.

Smith has been showing us his Spanish skills for years so this should no be a surprise.

Even though he’s not singing in Spanish in “Miami,” the entire track has Latin influences and the song includes the Spanish verse: “Bienvenidos a Miami.” Smith was reluctant to include the Spanish at first.

One of the producers told GQ, “It was my idea that the woman would say “Bienvenidos a Miami” which at the time Will was not in favor of as it might confuse non-Spanish speakers. It was Nas who finally convinced him.”

He’s spoken in Spanish on the red carpet.

You have to give the man credit for consistently speaking Spanish over the years with confidence.

And let’s not forget his collaboration with Bomba Estéreo at the Latin Grammy’s.


Keep up the Spanish practice, Will.

READ: Will Smith Came Out of a 10 Year Hiatus to Do a Song With Colombia’s Bomba Estereo

What do you think of Will’s Spanish singing abilities? Let us know by sharing this story and commenting below!

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