Nicholas Charles Goepper (born March 14, 1994) is an American freestyle skier. Representing the United States of America, Goepper won a bronze medal at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia and won a silver medal at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. He has also won three gold medals and two silver medals at the Winter X Games. His sponsors include PowerBar, Red Bull, and Völkl.
|Full name||Nicholas Charles Goepper|
|Born||March 14, 1994|
Fort Wayne, Indiana, United States
|Height||6 ft 0 in (183 cm)|
|Weight||160 lb (73 kg)|
|Coached by||Mike Jankowski|
Nick Goepper was born in Fort Wayne, Indiana, but raised in Lawrenceburg, Indiana. He has two younger sisters, one younger brother, and a cat. He began skiing at the age of five, started competing when he was eleven years old, and landed his first double backflip by thirteen.
In 2009, Goepper moved to Sandy, Oregon where he attended school and trained with professional skiers at Wy'East Mountain Academy (formerly Windells Academy) on a full ride scholarship under Head Coach Mike Hanley. Goepper won a gold medal at the 2013-14 FIS Freestyle Skiing World Cup in Cardrona, New Zealand and qualified for the 2014 Olympics at the 2013 Dew Tour in Breckenridge, Colorado. He placed first despite having to ski with a broken hand and no poles.
At the 2014 Winter Olympic Games, Nick Goepper, Gus Kenworthy, and Joss Christensen swept the medal podium winning bronze, silver, and gold, respectively in men's slopestyle skiing. The all American trio appeared on the Late Show with David Letterman in New York City and were also featured together on a Kellogg's Corn Flakes cereal box. He was also featured on a Jif peanut butter jar. Goepper's hometown threw a parade for him when he returned and Perfect North Slopes gave him a lifelong pass. He also met former Indiana Governor Mike Pence and threw the opening pitch of the season for the Cincinnati Reds baseball team.
Following the Pyeongchang Olympics, Goepper was awarded the Sagamore of the Wabash Award which is the most prestigious award an Indiana resident can receive. He later met President Donald Trump at the White House where he was mistakenly addressed as Mark Goepper.
In December 2014, Goepper partnered with Wy'East Mountain Academy (formerly Windells Academy) to host a rail jam competition at Perfect North Slopes which attracted more than 150 participants with all proceeds donated to "The Cure Starts Now Foundation". In June 2017, he joined a group of Olympic athletes on a week mission trip to Kigali, Rwanda organized by "Kids Play International".
In 2014, Goepper and his mother were featured in the NBC Sports televised series How to Raise an Olympian sponsored by the P&G "Thank You, Mom" campaign. His mother, Linda, recalled Goepper spending all day skiing in the terrain park at Perfect North Slopes and building ramps/jumps in the family backyard to use year-round. Goepper talked about watching hours of freestyle skiing videos of professionals. His sisters, both gymnasts at the time, taught him flips and helped coach him before competitions. Goepper also mentioned about selling candy bars on the school bus, mowing neighbors' lawns, and babysitting children to pay for his skiing related expenses when his father, Chris, lost his job during the Great Recession.
Before heading to his first Olympics, Goepper attended the 71st Golden Globe Awards where he met celebrities like Usher, actor Leonardo DiCaprio, actress Reese Witherspoon, former professional boxer Mike Tyson, and singer Taylor Swift whom he later asked to be his Valentine but was declined.
Before competing in his second Olympics, Goepper was interviewed by People Magazine. He said that he had a panic attack throwing rocks at some cars shortly after the Sochi Olympics. However, he immediately confessed to police and paid about $8,000 for damages. Goepper also shared about his struggle with suicidal thoughts. "There came a point when I was drinking every day and I was constantly thinking about ways to end my own life," he said. He was admitted into a rehabilitation center in Houston, Texas for two months and has since recovered.
On May 4, 2018, Goepper proposed to his girlfriend in Marco Island, Florida and announced their engagement on Instagram with the caption "She's stuck with me forever! Lizzy Braun-not-for-long". Goepper hopes to compete in the 2022 Winter Olympic Games in Beijing, China. Besides skiing, he enjoys surfing and skateboarding which he claims are helpful for cross training.
- "Athlete Profile – Nick GOEPPER". pyeongchang2018.com. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "Nick Goepper". United States Olympic Committee. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "Athlete: GOEPPER Nicholas". International Ski Federation. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- Smith, Shawn (February 18, 2018). "USA's Nick Goepper wins silver medal in freeski slopestyle". NBC Olympics. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "Nick Goepper's official X Games athlete biography". ESPN. January 24, 2018. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "Nick Goepper – PowerBar". PowerBar, Inc. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "Nick Goepper: Freeskiing – Red Bull Athlete Page". Red Bull. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "Nick Goepper Freestyle". Völkl. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "Windells Academy formally changes name to Wy'East Mountain Academy". Wy'East Mountain Academy. Retrieved 1 May 2019.
- Wallerson, Ryan (March 16, 2016). "Training with Nick Goepper: Inside his neuromuscular training". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "Best of U.S. Ski Slopestyle Team Member Nick Goepper". Dew Tour. February 9, 2018. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "Freestyle Skiing – Slopestyle Men – Medalists". Olympic.org. February 13, 2014. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "Athletic Spotlight: Nick Goepper". U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association. August 1, 2014. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "Remarks by President Trump Welcoming the U.S. Olympic Team". The White House (.gov). April 27, 2018. Retrieved April 27, 2018.
- Arens, Jason (January 29, 2015). "Rail Jams for Good Causes". Windells Academy. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "U.S. Olympians and NFL Players travel to Rwanda to Celebrate Olympic Day". Kids Play International. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "Lawrenceburg raised Goepper to Olympic glory". Cincinnati.com. February 4, 2014. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- Noble, Greg (February 13, 2018). "Nick Goepper: How did Greater Cincinnati skier get to Olympics". WCPO Cincinnati. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- Carlson, Adam (February 17, 2018). "Returning Olympic Medalist Nick Goepper: Why I Spoke Out About My Substance Abuse, Mental Health". People Magazine. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
- "Hometown hero Nick Goepper is engaged". WLWT5 Cincinnati. May 4, 2018. Retrieved May 4, 2018.
- "Another Side of Nick Goepper". FOX19 WXIX Cincinnati. March 2, 2014. Retrieved February 18, 2018.