Popular in extreme sport circles but knew to the Olympics, Jamie Anderson, 23, is someone to watch when snowboarding comes to the Sochi winter Olympics. Anderson is praised for her grace and style, and has won a number of awards to prove her merit
Here is what you need to know about this graceful boarder:
1. She Won Four Gold Medals at the Winter X Games
Anderson has been medaling at the X Games since 2006. During that time, while competing in the “SlopeStyle” category, Anderson has won four X Game gold medals, two silver medals, and two bronze medals. She also won a gold medal at the Winter Dew Tour in 2009.
You can watch a video of her riding below:
2. She Grew up Home-Schooled in Lake Tahoe
Anderson grew up on Lake Tahoe surrounded by snow and winter activities. According to her bio on her website, she is one of 8 kids, all of whom were home-schooled.
Anderson said that being home-schooled and her proximity of the mountain allowed her to spend more time on the mountain practicing.
3. She Qualified for the X Games at 13
Anderson first qualified for the winter X games at the age of 13 and, according to her bio, “was one of the youngest athletes to have ever competed at the winter X-Games.”
She won her first medal, a bronze in slopestyle, at the age of 15.
4. This is Her First Olympics and She’s a Favorite
Anderson is a newcomer to the Olympics, but her name won’t be unknown for long. The New York Times put her on a list of 12 athletes from around the world that sports fans don’t know now, but will. She was the only person playing for Team USA to make the list.
In the slopestyle event, she is a new favorite to bring home the gold.
5. She Won an ESPY Award in 2012
In 2012, Anderson brought home one of the sports world’s biggest honor, an ESPY award. The ESPYs (Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly Award) was given to Anderson for the category of “Best Female Action Sports Athlete,” winning over a number of other women in the the extreme sports like surfing, skiing, and wakeboarding.