Shelburne native heading to the Olympics

Published: Jan. 20, 2022 at 12:07 AM EST|Updated: Jan. 20, 2022 at 6:13 AM EST
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WILLISTON, Vt. (WCAX) - Athletes from all over the world will be heading to Beijing in less than two weeks to the Winter Olympics. One of them will be freestyle skier Megan Nick from Shelburne.

Megan Nick spent more than 10 years at Green Mountain Training Center working toward being a gymnast. Just before her senior year of high school, she was invited to try out aerial skiing in Lake Placid. What she didn’t know at the time was it would change the trajectory of her athletic career.

“At first we didn’t even know we were trying out for a team. We just thought it was a one-week camp that you go and try aerial skiing,” Nick said.

She and a group of friends from the Green Mountain Training Center went to aerial tryout camp in Lake Placid for a school project in 2013. Nine years later, she’s heading to the Winter Olympics as a member of Team USA. “Looking back now, I mean it’s just been a long journey. It was you know a lot of ups and downs,” Nick explained.

By moving to Lake Placid her senior year of high school, she missed out on milestones like prom and graduation. Prior to the move, Nick was a lifelong dedicated gymnast. She credits her coaches and training during that time for her ability to excel in freestyle skiing.

“It doesn’t surprise me that much though that she’s made it this far just with the athlete that she always was,” said Ashley Neary, her former gymnastics coach. She says Nick is versatile and resilient.

“That was her passion back when she was growing up -- the little kid -- but then she was able to put the skiing together with the gymnastics abilities and won’t be all she pulled it off,” said Nick’s dad, Jeff.

Since the start of her freestyle career, Nick has been on the podium in several international competitions. While there is potential of taking home a medal in Beijing, Nick says that’s not where her attention is at. “I’ve tried to shift my focus in the past few years of not having results-based goals and just trying to compete the way I train,” she said.

Her father and former coaches say they’re confident she’ll excel, no matter the outcome. “I’m so proud of her and just really happy for her she could not be more deserving of this,” Neary said.

“We’re just thrilled to be Megan’s parents and to watch your develop and to become just a great athlete and a great competitor,” added Jeff.

Right now, Nick is in Utah for training. She and the rest of Team USA’s freestyle skiing team will head to Los Angeles for COVID-19 testing on the 25th. Shortly after, they’ll be making their way to the Olympic Village in Beijing.

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