Winter Games Athletes
After proving her skill time after time in the ski halfpipe at both the X Games and world championships, Groenewoud now heads to her first Olympics in Sochi with a good chance to take home gold as the discipline makes its debut at the games. A close friend of the late Sarah Burke, who died in January 2012 after a crash in training, Groenewoud always wears a sticker bearing Burke's name on her helmet in competitions. Burke was considered an early medal favorite before her crash and instrumental in getting the ski halfpipe added to the Olympic program. Groenewoud became interested in moguls skiing after watching the 2002 Salt Lake City Games, but she found that her favorite part were the jumps and catching air, so she decided that the halfpipe was for her. It proved a wise decision for Groenewoud, who has medaled four times in X Games competitions, including a gold in 2012 in the SuperPipe. She also won gold in the halfpipe at the world championships in 2011 and has been in the top 10 in all but one of her 17 events on the World Cup circuit, including two victories among her eight podium finishes.