The road to Sochi | Q-and-A with Olympian Julia Mancuso |

The road to Sochi | Q-and-A with Olympian Julia Mancuso

Julia Mancuso of Squaw Valley has her eyes on gold in Sochi. She won gold in the super G in 2006 and added two silver medals in 2010.
Mitchell Gunn / ESPA |

Eight years have come and gone since Tahoe’s golden girl earned that claim to fame.

Now entering her fourth Olympics in Sochi, Russia, Julia Mancuso is determined to add to her gold-medal collection. And there may not be another U.S. skier who’s more capable in 2014.

After taking a break from the World Cup season, Mancuso is refreshed and primed to perform in Sochi.

She has earned three Olympic medals to date, with her gold coming in super G at the 2006 Turin, Italy, Winter Games. She still loves the super G. But she’s not partial, as gold would look just as good from any of her four events.

Check out what Mancuso had to say about the Sochi Winter Games and more.

Q: With it being an Olympic year, did you treat your offseason any different than normal as far as training?

A: “I spent a lot more time and attention to staying healthy, and did tons of Pilates and physical therapy. It’s not really different, just an extra focus on being the most prepared I can be.”

Q: Not only do you have a few Olympics under your belt now, you’ve also had a fair share of success there. What is about the Games that brings out the best in you?

A: “I just love the Olympics. I grew up in Squaw Valley so the Olympic flame really burns bright in everyday life. There really wasn’t a day that I didn’t think about them, or dream about being in them as a kid. I guess I just focused a lot of my energy there, and I have been so fortunate for those dreams to come true.”

Q: I imagine people ask if they can see your Olympic medals. Do you ever break them out to show off?

A: “I don’t keep them with me, so I wish I could, cause I think it’s kinda awesome and funny at the same time. It’s like having superpowers. I might look like a normal girl, but watch out!” 

Q: Are you entering the Sochi Games with any specific goals in mind?

A: “I want to win gold again. It was incredible to win two more medals in Vancouver, and I am super proud of those silvers, but nothing compares to standing on the top step.”

Q: You’ve always been known for your all-around ski racing ability. What is your favorite event, and in which event do you think you have the best shot at gold?

A: “I really like super G, because it’s fast and you have to make tactical decisions without knowing what comes next or how the speed will feel. I think you have to be more prepared in the moment, unlike downhill where you get training runs, and you just get the one chance.”

Q: Will this be your final Olympics?

A: “I have no idea. I am having fun in the sport, and I am in the best shape physically and mentally than I have ever been, so it’s hard to put a limit on things.”

Q: What’s next for you after ski racing?

A: “I want to continue to spend my life in nature, so wherever that brings me. Hopefully on top of more mountain peaks.”

Support Local Journalism


Support Local Journalism

Readers around Lake Tahoe, Truckee, and beyond make the Sierra Sun's work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Your donation will help us continue to cover COVID-19 and our other vital local news.