Olympic talent runs in the family, it seems—this year, the United States team will set a Winter Games record when it sends seven sets of siblings to Sochi (the previous record is six, set in 1964). Get to know the brothers and sisters who will push each other to be the best in their respective sports.
Taylor Gold and Arielle Gold
No athlete with the last name “Gold” has ever competed at the Olympics—but this year, there will be three: in addition to figure skater Gracie Gold, siblings Taylor Gold, 20, and Arielle Gold, 17, will both join the Olympic halfpipe team. Arielle, known for her extravagant tricks, earned second place in both the halfpipe and slopestyle at Austria’s Winter Youth Olympics in 2012, while Taylor’s 2011 U.S. Revolution Tour performance garnered a gold medal last year.
Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani
University of Michigan students Maia and Alex Shibutani began skating together at age 9 and 12, respectively. Together the pair has won gold in both the national and world junior championships, as well as medals the 2011, 2012 and 2013 national championship contests. Their bronze medal-finish at the 2014 championships earned them their first Olympic opportunity.
Amanda Kessel and Phil Kessel
U.S. hockey players Phil Kessel of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Amanda Kessel of the Minnesota Golden Gophers come from an athletic background—their father played for the Washington Redskins, while younger brother David plays for the ECHL’s Orlando Solar Bears. Phil was a first-round draft pick for the Boston Bruins in 2006 and helped Team USA bring home the silver medal from 2010’s Olympic Games in Vancouver. Amanda, who is taking a year off from collegiate hockey, was the top scorer in the NCAA last season.
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Bryan Fletcher and Taylor Fletcher
Nordic combined teammates Bryan Fletcher and Taylor Fletcher began skiing together as toddlers. Despite a leukemia diagnosis at age four, Bryan joined his brother in training at Howelsen Hill, a Colorado training ground for 79 past Olympians, before going into remission at age 10. The pair helped the U.S. team earn the bronze medal in the 2013 world championships. Taylor competed in the 2010 games, while the Sochi Games will be Bryan’s first Olympics.
Erik Bjornsen and Sadie Bjornsen
Both fairly new to the Nordic ski scene, the Bjornsen siblings qualified for Sochi within weeks of one another. Sadie, 24, has captured three U.S. titles despite back and foot injuries, while Erik, 22, has earned three podium finishes at the U.S. championships. Both earned All-American honors as freshmen at Alaska Pacific University.
Erika Brown and Craig Brown
Sochi-bound siblings Erika Brown and Craig Brown are no strangers to success—between the duo and their parents, Steve and Diane, the family has won 26 national curling championships. The 2014 games will be Erika’s third venture at the games, while Craig will make his Olympic debut in Sochi.
Monique Lamoureux and Jocelyne Lamoureux
Twin sisters Monique and Jocelyne Lamoureux, Team USA hockey players, led their prep school team to three state titles before playing college hockey at North Dakota, one of the top teams in the country. Together on the U.S. team, Monique and Jocelyne have earned three world championship medals as well as a silver medal at the Vancouver Games.