MONTREAL: Their identical radiant smiles give them away: three Canadian sisters who are inseparable, at the top of their sport and all three headed to Sochi to compete in the Olympics.
Freestyle skiers Maxime, Chloe and Justine Dufour Lapointe will become the first sister trio and only the fifth siblings to do so.
According to sports historians, three Leduc sisters from France competed in the 1960 women´s slalom, and the Jerman brothers from Argentina competed in 1976 in cross-country skiing.
As well, three Stastny brothers from Czechoslovakia played Olympic hockey in 1980, and four Tames brothers made up the Mexican bobsled team at the 1988 Games.
Maxime, 24, Chloe, 22, and Justine, 19, wear their red and black Team Canada jackets with pride, while their mother also beams in the background, "so happy that each of my three girls is realizing her dream".
"When I was 12 or 13 and on the provincial team, that´s when I knew that I wanted to go to the Olympics," says Chloe, who will be competing at her second Games in Sochi.
In Vancouver in 2010 she came in fifth in her sport.For the Dufour Lapointe family, skiing was merely a winter past-time, when ice and snow prevented them from sailing.
In order to keep up their education, they would cram schooling into four days each week, leaving them free to train on Fridays in order to compete on weekends.
"These girls have never been apart," and whatever challenges the future brings they will meet them together, says mom, recalling how they used to play together during long sailing trips.
That closeness may someday persist into a new career in fashion, with Chloe doing marketing, Justine being responsible for management and Maxime doing the actual sewing and stitching. Our skills and abilities are "complimentary," says Chloe, revealing that the three girls would like to launch a clothing line.
They have already chosen a possible brand name: "3SDL" for "three sisters Dufour Lapointe."
On February 8, mom and dad will waiting for them "at the bottom of the slope" and cheering them on. The best outcome would be to see all three sisters on the winners´ podium -- which would be a first in Olympic history. (AFP)