East Timor's Yohan Goncalves Goutt poses for a photo at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics, Monday, Feb. 17, 2014, in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia. Goncalves Goutt, 19, is preparing to compete as an Alpine skier in the Sochi Games, representing East Timor, whose officially recognized ski federation he founded. His race, the slalom, is Saturday night. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)

East Timor's 1st Winter Olympian gets set to ski

February 17, 2014

KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia (AP) -- Alpine skier Yohan Goncalves Goutt is East Timor's first Winter Olympian, set to compete in the slalom.

Born in Paris to a French father and Timorese mother, Goncalves Goutt carries both passports.

The 19-year-old Goncalves Goutt founded East Timor's officially recognized ski federation.

By representing East Timor, he hopes to spread the word about the impoverished country that was a Portuguese colony, was invaded by Indonesia in 1975, and became a sovereign state in 2002 after the United Nations intervened.

Goncalves Goutt says in an interview with The Associated Press on Monday that in addition to being an athlete, he has ''sort of a diplomatic role'' at the Sochi Games.

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