Goepper Locks Up Spot On U.S. Olympic Team
By Mike Perleberg
Dearborn County resident Nick Goepper secured a spot on the U.S. Olympic team with his second-place finish at the U.S. Freeskiing Grand Prix event held at Copper Mountain, Colorado on Saturday, December 21.
Harry How – Getty Images
(Lawrenceburg, Ind.) – Southeast Indiana will be represented in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
Nick Goepper is the top-ranked freeski slopestyle skier in the world. He won an Olympic selection event in Breckenridge, Colorado part of the U.S. Freeskiing Grand Prix on Sunday, December 15.
On Saturday, December 21, Goepper finished second in another selection event at Copper Mountain, Colorado. That performance secured his spot on the U.S. Olympic team and punching his ticket to Russia.
Goepper, of Hidden Valley, calls it a dream come true.
“It’s super fun,” Goepper said after learning he’s going to be an Olympian. “The Olympics add a bit more pressure, but we’re just out here trying to get creative and have fun.”
The ski slopestyle event – where skiers are judged, not timed, on their tricks performed on a series of jumps and rails – that the 18-year-old 2013 Winter X Games gold medalist competes in is making its Olympic debut in 2014.
There are three more U.S. Freeskiing Grand Prix competitions before the Sochi Olympics begin on February 6. Goepper said he plans to continue competing.
“I’m going to approach the next contests with the same confidence and the same preparation that I came here with. No pressure, I’m just trying to ski and have fun and land my runs,” said Goepper.
Goepper’s national exposure is taking off higher than one of his ski jumps. In addition to his past two performances beign nationally televised on NBC, he was recently featured in Sports Illustrated as an up and coming Olympian to watch.