By Diana Pearl
If Hannah Teter's name sounds familar, it's because she's no stranger to Olympic glory: she took home the halfpipe's gold medal in 2006 and a silver in 2010. After taking a brief recess from the world of competitive snowboarding in 2011, she roared back, winning medals at the Burton U.S. Open and the Winter X Games.
Jackie Hernandez made the switch from skiing to snowboarding at 8 years old, and thankfully so—she's got quite a few impressive finishes, including a World Cup win. After a unforseen injury in the form of a broken arm, she is back and ready to dominate at Sochi's snowboard cross.
Photo Credit: Sarah Brunson/U.S. Snowboarding
Jessika Jenson has been steadily climbing the ranks of snowboarding competitions to the top spot—a place on the Olympic team. She was chosen as a discretionary selection for Team USA. Along with some of her teammates, Jenson will compete in slopestyle in Sochi, a first for the team, as it's never been included in the women's snowboarding program before.
Good as gold is the most apt way to describe first time Olympic snowboard slopstyle competitor Jamie Anderson: since 2004, she's won 47 (yes, you read that right) gold medals at various competitions. Her dominance continues off the mountain as well—the environmentalist does significant charity work including coordinating a coat drive.
You've seen her take on the Olympics in 2010, and now Faye Gulini is back after being eliminated in the quarterfinals in Vancouver. She's also no stranger to the site of this year's Olympics—she placed at the FIS World Cup that was held in Sochi last year. It may not be home mountain advantage—but it counts for something! She will compete in the snowboard cross competition.
Snowboarding wasn't always Karly Shorr's passion—she previously competited as a gymnast until she found her calling on the mountain. She's had some super successful moments—including being crowned overall tour champion at the 2012 Revolution Tour. She joins the team by competing in slopestyle.
She may be young, but Ty Walker knows what she's doing on a snowboard. Despite being from a family of skiers, the 16-year-old slopestyle competitor has been on the snowboarding radar since she was a mere 7-years-old. She qualified for Sochi after an impressive finish—the top American—at the 2013 Cooper Grand Prix.
Lindsey Jacobellis is one of the top snowboarders to watch in Sochi representing Team USA. Her resume is stacked—credentials include 26 World Cup wins and seven X Games gold medals. Her Olympic win is legendary—after a definite lead, she wound up with a silver medal at the 2006 Olympics in Torino after a botched trick. Let's hope her success is sweeter in Sochi. She will compete in snowboard cross.
At 17-years-old, Arielle Gold is one of the youngest on this year's Olympic team, but that hasn't stopped her from dominating halfpipe competition over the past year. However, her age isn't her only interesting tidbit. Her older brother, Taylor, is also competing in Sochi in what sport? You guessed it: snowboarding.
Halfpipe snowboarder Kaitlyn Farrington claims that she prefers slopestyle, but with moves so impressive we don't even know what they look like such as Cabs, backside spins, and McTwists in her bag of tricks, we're happy that she's taking on the halfpipe this year at Sochi.
Clark is a seasoned Olympian: her first games was over 10 years ago in 2002 in Salt Lake City. She's one of the few athletes participating in this year's games with such a long Olympic track record. To boot, she's got 8 gold medals under her belt. Perhaps Sochi's halfpipe competition will push her into the double digits.
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