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Date of Birth:
June 27, 1986
City/State of Birth:
Steamboat Springs, Colorado
Park City, Utah
Olympics and Events Attended:
2014 Olympics, Sochi, Russia, Nordic Combined Large Hill Individual, Normal Hill Individual, and the 4X5 Team Event
I have been on an incredible journey and these next few paragraphs only scrape the surface! So if you have any questions or want to know more about anything you read please feel free to contact me. I love sharing my stories!
So letís start at the very beginning, I was born in Steamboat Springs, Colorado on June 27, 1986. For those of you who have never been to Steamboat you should know it's a ski town through and through. It didnít take long before I was completely wrapped up in everything about it. My father had me on his back skiing before I could walk.
When I was just shy of three years old I was diagnosed with A.L.L or Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. It was this diagnosis that started my amazing journey as a Nordic Combined athlete. While still battling cancer, I was introduced to the world of Ski Jumping and Nordic Combined by some influential people in the sport. I was hooked from day one. I would divide my time between chemo treatments and the sport, which helped to keep my spirits alive. I would spend two weeks in Denver undergoing treatments and a week in Steamboat, throwing my body off a jump and into the air! Ultimately, this helped me to fight for my life and to be number one on the jumps. But I didnít stop at the jumps; I wanted to push myself further and took my ambitions to the cross-country trails, which in turn made me a Nordic Combined athlete.
I worked my way up the ranks from that point on. I spent every second I could at the famous Howelsen Hill where I would jump and ski with the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club. Everyday our coaches would take us out to spend the day playing games, which improved our athletic skills. Most of the time we were unaware of the valuable skills we were learning because we were having so much fun. As my teammates and I progressed we transitioned from not only working hard on the hill but also off. The values I learned while in the program are life-long; I cannot thank every coach throughout the years enough, for shaping me into the person and athlete I am today.
I eliminated one sport at a time through my younger years until I was solely focused on Nordic Combined. My freshman year of high school I was selected to be a fore jumper at the 2002 Olympics. This honor further solidified my goals and ambitions to become a world-class athlete. From there, I excelled to higher level of competitions and results. Shortly after graduating high school in November of 2004, I became a member of the U.S. Ski Team. I jumped in headfirst, learning from the best in the world. In my first competitive season on the U.S. Ski Team, I was named to the World Championship team. The very next year I had a breakthrough season on Continental Cup. In 2008 things finally came together when I landed my first podium finish on Continental Cup. I was named to my second World Championship team in 2009. 2010 was a great year for our team. Our team took 4 out of a 7 possible medals at the Olympics. I unfortunately was hurt for half of the season but that did not stop me. I healed up and was able to finish on a high note with a 4th place finish in Kuusamo, Finland.
The 2011 Season was a breakthrough year for me. I put a lot of hard work the summer before and it paid off. I started off the season with a personal best 18th place on World Cup in Kuusamo, Finland. From there I consistently was able to finish in the top 30 throughout the season. It wasnít long into the season before I got my first top ten. In Ramsau, Austria I was 8th Place smashing my previous personal best and putting my face on the front pages of newspapers across the country. I was named to my 3rd World Championship Team, and we came very close to medals every comp. I myself performed exceptionally well on the jump hill. I was able to finish the season inside the top 30. I was the number one ranked U.S. Nordic Combined Athlete this season. Overall I was 28th in the World Rankings List.
In 2012 my results continued to improve. I finished a strong 17th place in the overall and put my name in the Nordic Combined history books as only the 5th American to ever win the Holmenkollen World Cup at Oslo, Norway. More importantly it proved to myself that I am capable of much more in the sport. Additionally I am very happy that I now have a platform to continue my work to fight cancer from.
The work doesnít stop however. The summer of 2012 I put any vacations or relaxation time on hold to continue my training and hard work. I am very dedicated and driven to succeed. I want to give myself the best chance possible to improve upon my previous results next season. The worked paid off, in the 2013 season I again was able to land inside the top 30 in the overall including two podiums in team events. One in a regular world cup, and the other at my 4th World Championships. Billy Demong, Taylor Fletcher, Todd Lodwick and I secured a team bronze in Val Di Fiemme, Italy. This was certainly the highlight of my season.
2014 came quickly. Media requests and opportunities made the summer fly by. I was happy named to the 2014 Olympic team this season, my first Olympic team. A relief to finally be able to say I am an Olympian. Results wise the season had its ups and downs, however the highlight was for sure taking 5th place in the first ever Nordic Combined Triple. Three events in three days and I was able to finish 6th, 6th, and 5th. The 2014 season gave me plenty of momentum to carry into the 2015 World Championship season. The work continues.
I am currently based in Park City, Utah where I am training full time with my teammates. I work part time at various restaurants around town, however I spend most of my time trying to help the youth of the sport excel to new levels. Whatever time I have left I spend volunteering for various cancer organizations. Helping in the fight against cancer has become a hobby of mine. In just three years I have been involved with multiple organizations and events which has raised over a million dollars to go towards the fight against cancer and families fighting cancer. The future is coming one day at a time and I am working hard to accomplish the goals I have set.