2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Nick Goepper?

Published: Wednesday, January 31, 2018 @ 4:56 PM

What You Need to Know About Nick Goepper

Nick Goepper is a 2014 Olympic bronze medalist in slopestyle and a three-time X Games champion.

>> Read more trending news 

Goepper started out the 2017-18 season with a fourth-place finish at the World Cup in New Zealand.

2014 Sochi Games

Goepper was the top-ranked skier heading into Sochi. He nabbed an early lead in the slopestyle final with a promising first run, in which he landed a triple cork, but he was upstaged. Goepper's first run score was enough to score bronze. This was only the third time in history that the U.S. swept the podium at the Olympic Winter Games.

About Goepper

Goepper was born March 4, 1994, in Lawrenceburg, a small farming town in Southern Indiana. He is the eldest of four children. His two sisters were competitive gymnasts. Goepper would practice his jumps on the trampoline under the guidance of his sisters’ coach, Mary Lee Tracy, who was the assistant coach for the gold medal-winning 1996 women’s gymnastics team. 

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - MAY 25: Nick Goepper attends the 2014 Indy 500 at Indianapolis Motorspeedway on May 25, 2014 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)(Michael Hickey/Getty Images)

During his middle school days, Goepper would mow lawns, pull weeds and sell candy bars in order to earn enough money to buy a ski pass for the winter. He would buy the candy bars in bulk from Costco and then sell them out of his backpack on the school bus.

>> More Olympics coverage at WPXI.com

Goepper was discovered at an action sports camp in Ohio at the age of 15 and was later offered a scholarship to a sports academy in Oregon.

Other interesting facts:
  • Finished second at the 2017 Euro X Games.
  • First impressive results came during the 2010-2011 season, when he placed third at the Dew Tour stop at Killington, then later won the Dumont Cup that winter.

Trending - Most Read Stories

Here's why Olympic figure skater Yuzuru Hanyu's fans throw Winnie the Pooh bears on the ice

Published: Sunday, February 18, 2018 @ 7:50 AM

A skating girl collects Winnie The Pooh toys off the ice following Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan's performance during the men's short program figure skating in the Gangneung Ice Arena at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Gangneung, South Korea, Friday, Feb. 16, 2018. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)
Julie Jacobson/AP
A skating girl collects Winnie The Pooh toys off the ice following Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan's performance during the men's short program figure skating in the Gangneung Ice Arena at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Gangneung, South Korea, Friday, Feb. 16, 2018. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)(Julie Jacobson/AP)

In one of the strangest stories that we’ve seen out of the 2018 Winter Olympics, beloved bear Winnie the Pooh is making a comeback.

>> Olympic figure skater Paul Fentz wows with 'Game of Thrones' costume

The lovable bear is the unofficial mascot of Japanese figure skater Yuzuru Hanyu. Every time Hanyu takes to the ice, he keeps a stuffed bear on the side of the rink for good luck, often bowing to the toy before performing, Time magazine reported. Fans know of Hanyu's love for the character and throw Winnie the Pooh bears onto the rink. The carefree bear has proved to be a pretty effective spirit animal for Hanyu, who is considered by some to be the best figure skater in history.

>> Visit WPXI.com for complete coverage of the 2018 Winter Olympics

And the bears aren’t wasted, either. After Hanyu leaves the ice, the stuffed animals are collected and donated to local charities.

Too racy for the Olympics? Figure skaters Tessa Virtue, Scott Moir tone down controversial lift

The 23-year-old won a gold medal in Pyeongchang on Saturday, making him the first male skater since 1952 to win back-to-back Olympic golds. In a New York Times profile of the star, the paper wrote that thousands of Hanyu’s fans traveled to South Korea to see him compete. Some of them wore Winnie the Pooh hats while others donned Winnie the Pooh costumes.

>> Olympic figure skater Yura Min suffers wardrobe malfunction, handles it with class

>> Read more trending news 

And the story of Hanyu’s gold medal performance has the kind of storybook twists and turns that you might expect from something a lot more dramatic than Winnie the Pooh. In the months leading up the games, when he should have been entering his final round of preparation, Hanyu suffered an injury to his ankle that threatened his performance. But, in a comeback story for the ages, the Japanese star managed to return with a vengeance, cementing himself as the greatest ice skater in the world. And, Winnie the Pooh was there on the sidelines for the entire thing.

What You Need to Know: Mirai Nagasu

Related

Trending - Most Read Stories

Olympic figure skater Paul Fentz wows with 'Game of Thrones' costume

Published: Sunday, February 18, 2018 @ 6:59 AM

Paul Fentz of Germany performs during the men's free figure skating final in the Gangneung Ice Arena at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Gangneung, South Korea, Saturday, Feb. 17, 2018. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
Morry Gash/AP
Paul Fentz of Germany performs during the men's free figure skating final in the Gangneung Ice Arena at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Gangneung, South Korea, Saturday, Feb. 17, 2018. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)(Morry Gash/AP)

“Game of Thrones” fans from around the world were loving German Olympic figure skater Paul Fentz’s costume at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

>> Visit WPXI.com for complete coverage of the 2018 Winter Olympics

Fentz was clearly not on the fence when it came to a tribute to the character Jaime Lannister, and neither were people on the internet when it came to voicing positive opinions about it.

>> Too racy for the Olympics? Figure skaters Tessa Virtue, Scott Moir tone down controversial lift

The Olympian also skated to the “Game of Thrones” soundtrack.

Here's what fans had to say:

>> Olympic figure skater Yura Min suffers wardrobe malfunction, handles it with class

Even commentators Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir were into it.

>> Read more trending news 

“It was not his best, but a Lannister always pays his debts,” Lipinski said. “This music gets me.”

Florida High School Shooting: U.S. Olympic Figure Skaters Dedicated Performance to Slain Victims

Related

Trending - Most Read Stories

Mikaela Shiffrin of Team USA wins Olympic gold medal in women's giant slalom

Published: Thursday, February 15, 2018 @ 12:59 AM

What You Need To Know About Mikaela Shiffrin

Mikaela Shiffrin of the United States has won the gold medal in the women's giant slalom at the 2018 Winter Olympics.

>> MORE: Who is Mikaela Shiffrin?Photo gallery

>> Read more trending news 

Related

Trending - Most Read Stories

2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Mikaela Shiffrin?

Published: Friday, February 02, 2018 @ 11:09 AM

What You Need To Know About Mikaela Shiffrin

Mikaela Shiffrin, is the youngest-ever Olympic slalom gold medalist. She won when she was 18 at the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

>> Read more trending news 

>> More Olympics coverage at WPXI.com

Shiffrin is widely considered to be the next great women’s ski racer. The Eagle-Vail, Colorado, native is dominant in slalom and competitive in giant slalom.

North Korea Announces They Will Participate In 2018 Olympics

Other interesting facts:

  • Leads the overall World Cup standings for the 2016-17 season.
  • Considers Olympic gold medalist Missy Franklin to be one of her best friends.
  • Following in the footsteps of her parents, Jeff and Eileen Shiffrin, who are former collegiate skiers.

Trending - Most Read Stories