He’s competing in new Olympic event
Area teen going for the Gold!

EDITOR'S NOTE: The Winter Olympics begins Friday and Hoosiers, particularly, will want to pay attention to Indiana native Nick Goepper in the slopestyle skiing event. The 19-year-old is from Southeast Indiana and on the Olympic team, which was announced at the Grand Prix in Utah two weeks ago. Nick has gotten some media attention, being on The David Letterman Show last week where he showed clips of this new Olympic sport. It’s one of four new sports in freestyle skiing, including ski halfpipe. His family will be in Sochi to watch him compete. According to the Olympic website schedule, qualifications are Feb. 13 beginning at 10:15 a.m. His sister, Kasey, a senior at Lawrenceburg High School, is blogging for WRTV Indianapolis to capture the Olympic experience. This article is reprinted with permission from Register Publications.

Register Publications

Making the U.S. Olympic team at age 19 is tough, but making the U.S. Olympic Team in Slopestyle Skiing when you are from the Midwest is unheard of.

Being tough and extraordinary is exactly what Lawrenceburg local Nick Goepper has been doing since competing in his first Big Air contest at Perfect North Slopes at age 11.

Nick Goepper

Visit the Dew Tour website to learn more about Nick.

If you would have asked 5-year-old Nick if he thought he would ever be going to the Olympics in any event that would involve skiing, that little boy would have told you, no way.

“When I first started skiing I hated the cold, and the boots were uncomfortable,” said Goepper.

His mom, Linda, introduced Nick to skiing at the age of five with “Ski Doodles” lessons at Perfect North Slopes. According to Mom, as Nick grew to love the sport; she constantly had to tell him to slow down.

That determination from such a young age has helped Nick to secure a spot on the first U.S. Olympic Slopestyle Skiing team. The “new school” alpine event will be added to the Olympics for the first time when the 22nd Winter Games open Feb. 7 in Sochi, Russia.

Nick became the frontrunner for a spot on the U.S. Olympic Slopestyle Skiing team by placing first at the Dew Tour Ion Mountain Championships in Breckenridge, Colorado, in December. He clinched his Olympic berth with a second place finish a week later at the U.S. Grand Prix in Copper Mountain, Colorado. Goepper is the first American man to finish on the podium in either of the first two Olympic selection events.

After his stellar performances, you would never know that he is recovering from a broken left wrist, reportedly fractured by banging his hand on a chunk of ice while skiing in New Zealand. To make the Lawrenceburg freeski champion’s meteoric rise even more amazing, Goepper hasn’t been using poles while competing in the Olympic qualifying competitions. Goepper’s latest conquests continue to add to what has become one highly accomplished resume.

In January 2013, Goepper won the gold medal in the men’s ski slopestyle event at ESPN’s X Games in Aspen, Colorado. He also won the gold again about a week ago, scoring a 95 on the final run.

The 2014 Olympic Games will mark the introduction of both men’s and women’s ski and snowboard slopestyle to the Winter Games repertoire. Goepper is ready to compete and understands the significance of his first-time event.

“I hope the addition of ski slopestyle really makes history for the sport,” said Goepper. He added, “It’s a dream come true!”

Nick openly admits he owes his success to his supportive parents and family who have helped him become the young man and athlete he is today.

“Spending time with my family means a lot to me,” Goepper said. “They have always been so supportive; I really value the time I have with them.”

His parents were so supportive that they encouraged Nick to leave Lawrenceburg at the age of 15 to attend Wendells Academy, a year-round action sports academy for snowboarding, skiing and skateboarding in Brightwood, Oregon.

When visiting home, Goepper enjoys spending time with friends and family, eating at his favorite hometown restaurants and of course making time to continue his training at SEI Elite Fitness in Lawrenceburg.

After tackling his journey to the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Goepper is looking forward to college, possibly at the University of Utah in the fall of 2014.

When asked what advice he has for young skiers hoping to achieve lofty goals, as he has done, Nick simply replies: “Have fun, find your passion and never be afraid to embarrass yourself when trying new things.”



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