Ashley Caldwell isn't a household name yet, but she's going to be a major contender at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia. Despite being the youngest competitor in Olympic freestyle skiing, she qualified to proceed to the final round and placed tenth overall. Not too bad for a teenager.
"I had no idea what to expect," Ashley, 16, reveals about her Olympic experience. "Everything is bigger and way more awesome than I expected. It's an overwhelming feeling just being out here."
Ashley, a Hamilton, VA native, was hoping to break the United States' unlucky streak in this sport – an American hasn't won a medal in it since 1998. But she's confident that will change at her next turn competing in the Olympics.
"What I've learned from this is that women are doing sweet jumps...sweet jumps that I'll have to do in Sochi," Ashley says.
This teen Olympian is the oldest of four kids in her fam and describes how it feels to fly and flip above a group of people. "Not being able to see anybody from the top was good. I really got to focus and didn't have to worry about the crowd. Then, when you got to the bottom, you could see the crowd when you landed and you could get real excited again."
Did you see some of Ashley's power performances?