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Red, White & Trending: Dec. 1-7

By Jamie MacDonald | Dec. 08, 2017, 11:54 p.m. (ET)

What are Team USA athletes — Olympians, Paralympians and hopefuls — up to when they're not competing? They're training. They're practicing. They're traveling to competitions and meets and games and tournaments. They're relaxing. They're getting engaged and married and having children. They're taking hard-earned vacations. Or retiring. Or coping with the raw emotions that come from losing and winning. And they're sharing. Through the reach of social media, we're able to follow along on their often extraordinary journeys. We'll catch you up each week on what's "Red, White & Trending."

The Year’s Best

In the event someone was daring to dream, who would have the temerity to, say, consider starting the year winning a Grand Slam tennis tournament? While pregnant? Followed by welcoming a baby girl and getting married? In short, the kind of sports legend and Olympic champion who winds up with her name one of the biggest buildings at the headquarters of on of the most successful athletic companies in the world. Here’s a hint …

Still, Williams can occasionally use a boost from her fans …


Heirloom Advice

Alpine skiing legend Lindsey Vonn’s weekend in Lake Louise didn’t go as planned, but it did lead her to posting one of the great quotes we’ve seen for a competitive athlete. And it’s from a relative.

Impromptu Lift

Do you want to know how Olympic bobsled hopeful Lauren Gibbs looks like this?

By working out any way she can. And that includes on the road. In Germany. In a parking garage.

Japan, In Perspective

The Shib Sibs are on the road again. Packing and unpacking are a way of life for Team USA, and few do it with as much aplomb, or social media style and grace, as the sibling skating duo, fresh off a gold medal in Lake Placid, New York, and within about two months of a chance to win an Olympic medal in PyeongChang. Ah, life on the road …


Ann Arbor today. 🌳 Japan tomorrow. 🏯 Threads: @poloralphlauren Photo cred: @jborjen

A post shared by Alex Shibutani (@alexshibutani) on


Hard to argue with this sentiment …


Cleanest escalator I’ve ever seen. 😯

A post shared by Alex Shibutani (@alexshibutani) on

A mesmerizing time-lapse from another perspective …


πŸ“Nagoya, Japan

A post shared by Maia Shibutani (@maiashibutani) on

Still life …


Nice to wake up to this view this week! γŠγ―γ‚ˆγ†γ”γ–γ„γΎγ™οΌ

A post shared by Maia Shibutani (@maiashibutani) on

Hometown Hero

Now all of 19 years old, River Radamus says he grew up dreaming of skiing for Team USA at the Olympics, yes. But also, having grown up in Vail, of competing at Beaver Creek. That dream came true this past week when Radamus, who won three gold medals at the 2016 Winter Youth Olympic Games in Lillehammer, made his first world cup start at the famous Birds of Prey event. Presumably his competing, though he missed the second race by .02 seconds, was better than another recurring dream.

But for those .02 …

Comeback Trails

Between them, Olympic alpine skiers Laurenne Ross and Julia Mancuso, herself a four-time Olympic medalist, there are literally years lost to injury. Add to that the pain and suffering of those injuries (take a look at Ross’ litany below, and Mancuso underwent hip surgery in 2015, leading to months on crutches), followed by rehab, then having to adjust to a new normal not only of expectations, but also of an imperfectly altered way of life, and you have the makings of a long road back to work. For Ross and Mancuso, that road leads to now.


8 months later -- after a torn ACL / LCL / medial meniscus / lateral meniscus / popliteal fibular ligament, dislocated tibiofibular joint, and a broken tibial plateau -- I am stepping back in the start gate. Tomorrow is another big step, and I feel ready to take it. I am scared, of course, but I feel more excited than anything... Excited to get nervous, excited to try my new hand, excited for the unknown. Thank-you to everyone who has held my hand, stood by my side, and shown love and support on this journey. And thank-you for the little pushes and words of encouragement. Without you I couldn't be here ♥️ @rebound_pt @sportsrehabconsulting @usskiteam @mtbachelor @voelklskis @brikousa @reusch_brand @reuschspeedunicorns @lekiusa @bose @robertross1228 @jmpurvis55 πŸ“Έ: Fabrice Coffrini

A post shared by Laurenne Ross (@lalalaurenne) on


It’s On

Day. One. Into every skier’s year, an Opening Day must fall. And not a moment too soon. In this case, one of the calendar’s most anticipated days fell into the lap of four-time Olympian Daron Rahlves.



@imbirdy5 Blowing it up @sugarbowlresort #openingday #rahlvesrun #moresnowlesscrowds @atomicski #vantage100

A post shared by Daron Rahlves (@daronrahlves) on

The World’s Most Famous …

Madison Square Garden is known as “The World’s Most Famous Arena,” and two of Team USA’s best young boxers can add to their resumes an appearance in the hallowed hall. Congratulations are in order for 20-year-old silver medalist Shakur Stevenson and 27-year-old Mikaela Mayer, both of whom have made their professional debuts after competing in Rio. Heading into the weekend, both were active on social media, including Mayer’s preview video.





The wait is almost over! #LomaRigo πŸ¦… πŸ“Έ: @trappfotos

A post shared by Shakur Stevenson (@shakurstevenson) on

Welcome To New York

New Yorkers are famously unwilling to engage with a glance in the midst of the sidewalk hustle and bustle, but that doesn’t mean three-time Olympic gold medalist Heather Mitts can’t do her part to crack the veneer

The results this time around?


Better Luck This Year?

Yes, Rio Olympian Madison Keys, this would be a tough act to follow. Given her success this year, including an appearance in an all-American US Open final this past September, perhaps she will close out 2017 with another victory.


Trying to figure out how to top my ugly Christmas sweater game after this gem last year

A post shared by Madison Keys (@madisonkeys) on

Next Gen

Ryker Alexander Grant gained his own independence, of sorts, on July 4, and, all these months later, has hit the pool with mom and seven-time Olympic swimming medalist Dana Vollmer. Clearly, he’s in good hands.

Pool, Cue …

Team USA has certainly made its presence felt at the World Para Swimming Championships in Mexico City. At the 2015 edition, Team USA earned 30 medals, and it didn’t take long to start toward improving on that number in 2017 …





And how about this effort from 13-time Paralympic gold medalist Jessica Long? 


Related Athletes

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Serena Williams

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Lindsey Vonn

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Lauren Gibbs

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River Radamus

Alpine Skiing
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Mikaela Mayer

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Shakur Stevenson

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Dana Vollmer

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Jessica Long