Ted Ligety


To race in the Olympics as a member of team USA


Ted Ligety was born on August 31, 1984 in Salt Lake City, Utah. His parents taught him how to ski at the age of 2 years old, and they supported him throughout his life. he was enrolled into a Winter Sports Ski Team in 8th grade His parents recall that Ted, as a kid, would tell his coaches that one day, he was going to race in the Olympics. Knowing it was only a child's imagination, the would tell Ted to have a more realistic goal, due to the fact that he was losing races by seven seconds, and that was just to the other 11-year-olds on his town’s ski team. Ted was over looked among the top skiing talents of his generation.

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Many physical and emotional things stood in the way of Ted achieving his dream:

  • wasn't strong enough to be a successful skier
  • did not make his local youth ski team the first time he tried out
  • bypassed for the US development team as a kid
  • as a child he was not very good and was beat by all the girls that raced against him
  • his (eventual) spot on the development team organizational ladder was so low his parents had to pay $10,000 for him to be on the team


Ted asked his parents, who never raced when they were younger, if he could delay college for one more winter, as a last chance to reach the elite level. Ted had matured physically and suddenly had the best season of his career as a young skier. At the age of 19, Ted was invited to join the U.S. ski team’s developmental squad, a big accomplishment even if it was so low on the scale to fame on the team, that his parents had to pay $10,000 so that Ted could compete. Top ski racers had a corporate sponsor’s name or logo displayed across the brim of their helmet. But since Ted was still not among the best of the racers on the team, he didn't allow this to undermine his confidence, instead he put duct tape across his helmet with the words: "Mom and Dad", to show that his parents were the only sponsors that he needed.

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During the 2013 Alpine World Championships in Schladming, Austria, Ted had the fastest times in the giant slalom, super-combined, and super G, making him the first man since Jean-Claude Killy (1968) to win three gold medals at a single World Championships. After finishing the season ranked, a career high, third in the overall World Cup standings, he was named the 2012/13 Olympic Sportsman of the Year. In 2014, at the Sochi Winter Olympic games, Ted Ligety won gold in the Men's Giant slalom. Winning by almost a full second against the best men in the world, making Ted Ligety the best male giant slalom skier in the world.

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