With a strong mix of veteran leadership and youthful enthusiasm, the U.S. Olympic Alpine ski team heads to Sochi to tussle with the world’s best with a good measure of expectations.
In what should be an exhilarating 13 days of competition in Russia, popular American athletes such as Bode Miller, Ted Ligety, Julia Mancuso and newcomer Mikaela Shiffrin will compete in 10 men’s and women’s competitions that will certainly be among the most followed of the 2014 Winter Olympics.
As always, skiers from European countries such as Norway, Austria and France will be significant medal threats in Russia. Stars such as Norway's Aksel Lund Svindal, Slovenia's Tina Maze and Germany’s Maria Hoefl-Riesch are sure to introduce themselves as the Alpine competition plays out.
The test between skier and mountain is always one that garners attention during the Winter Olympics, and we can expect great drama and intrigue in Sochi this time around.
Here are the athletes to know, the events to follow and the storylines to stay on top of when the competition gets underway on the slopes.