Our Predictions for America’s Top Olympic Skiers of 2014
What we think will happen on, and off, the course at Sochi
Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.
America’s top alpine skiers will undoubtedly make their mark in Sochi. but based on past performances, their impact may have more to do with off-the-slopes shenanigans than on-the-hill heroics. Here, predictions of the coming drama.
It's Miller Time?As Bode plunges into the most ambitious ski season of his career, he’s already met his match—a woman who, like him, seems to thrive on a little craziness.
The Malcontent: Ted Ligety, 29
On the Slopes: Gold medal trifecta! Ligety takes the giant slalom, super-G, and combined.
Off the Slopes: Despite newfound glory, opts to continue his war against the sport’s governing body over ski regulations, composing a novella-length blog post that includes 93 technical footnotes. Immediately after the Games, announces he has signed the entire Austrian team to Shred Optics, his ski-gear brand.
The Maverick: Julia Mancuso, 29
On the Slopes: Beats expectations—again—by medaling in the super-G and downhill.
Off the Slopes: Après hot-tub selfie on Instagram earns her a rebuke from the U.S. Ski Team for showing “too much side boob.” Stays one step ahead of the paparazzi by tweeting that she is back together with ex-boyfriend and Norwegian superskier Aksel Lund Svindal before they actually get back together.
The New Kid: Mikaela Shiffrin, 18
On the Slopes: Wins gold in slalom and bronze in giant slalom, making her the youngest woman to medal in either event in Olympic history.
Off the Slopes: Expands her role as the face of energy candy by landing sponsorship with a new brand of protein-enhanced Skittles called Super Chompers, then abruptly cancels the contract when her pet reindeer, Rudolf, ODs on the things.
The Loose Cannon: Bode Miller, 36
On the Slopes: Charges hard and crashes harder, finishing way out of medal contention.
Off the Slopes: Gives an utterly bizarre (and totally awesome) post-race interview with Bob Costas, in which he confesses that during his GS run he “decided to become a zookeeper.” Later, challenges his wife, pro volleyballer Morgan Beck, to a Chinese downhill, which ends badly when he accidentally jams his pole into her thigh.