After a year of incredible accomplishments, five men, five women and three teams have been nominated for Team USA Awards presented by Dow, Best of the Year in the Olympic categories. Up for Female Olympic Athlete of the Year, presented by DICK'S Sporting Goods, are long track speedskater Heather Bergsma, snowboarder Lindsey Jacobellis, swimmer Katie Ledecky, wrestler Helen Maroulis and alpine skier Mikaela Shiffrin. Up for Male Olympic Athlete of the Year are biathlete Lowell Bailey, swimmer Caeleb Dressel, track and field athlete Sam Kendricks, wrestler Kyle Snyder and freestyle skier McRae Williams. And up for Olympic Team of the Year, presented by Dow, are the bobsled duo of Elana Meyers Taylor and Kehri Jones, the women's national ice hockey team and the women's water polo world championship team. Over the past two weeks, we helped you get to know each nominee a little bit better. Now it’s time for you to put that knowledge to the test.
How well do you know the Best of the Year nominees? You’re about to find out. Answers are at the bottom, and remember, no cheating! When you’re finished, don’t forget to vote for your favorites by heading to TeamUSA.org/Awards.
1. Which athlete is the oldest ever to win an individual world championship in his or her sport?
2. Which athlete claimed three-peats in three events at their 2017 world championships?
3. Who is the youngest U.S. athlete to win both a world title and an Olympic gold medal in his or her sport?
4. Which team won its fourth consecutive world championship?
5. Which athlete broke a world record just minutes after it was set?
6. Which athlete competed in trampoline and tried aerials before discovering his or her sport?
7. Which team currently holds every major title in the sport?
8. Which athlete became the first in his or her sport to win a world title in one event more than three times?
9. Which athlete is the first in the history of his or her sport to win three world titles in one day?
10. Which team includes an athlete who took up their sport just two years ago?
11. Which athlete was the second-youngest ever to make a U.S. senior world team in his or her sport?
12. Which athlete began competing in world cups when he or she was 15 years old?
13. Which athlete set seven of the year’s top 13 marks in his or her event?
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1. Lowell Bailey. Bailey became the first ever U.S. athlete, male or female, to win a biathlon world title. At 35 years and 216 days old, he also became the oldest athlete to win an individual biathlon world championship gold medal. Click here to vote for Bailey.
2. Katie Ledecky. Ledecky won six medals, five of them gold, at the 2017 FINA World Championships, setting the women’s record for most career world championship gold medals with 14. Her gold medals in the 400, 800 and 1,500-meter freestyle events were her third in a row, as she previously won world titles in 2013 and 2015. Click here to vote for Ledecky.
3. Kyle Snyder. Snyder won his first world title in 2015. He followed that up in 2016 with a gold medal at the Olympic Games Rio 2016. He won both medals when he was just 19 years old and, at 20, has won three straight world and Olympic titles. Click here to vote for Snyder.
4. U.S. Women’s Ice Hockey National Team. The women’s hockey team won eight world championship silver medals in a row from 1990 through 2004, but has since won gold in eight of the last 10 editions of the event, including the last four. Click here to vote for the U.S. Women’s Ice Hockey National Team.
5. Heather Bergsma. Bergsma set the first Olympic-distance world record of her career in November of 2015 when she skated 1:12.54 in the 1,000-meter. The previous record of 1:12.54 had been set by teammate Brittany Bowe, who competed just minutes earlier. Click here to vote for Bergsma.
6. McRae Williams. Williams grew up in a family of skiers, making it inevitable that he would end up in a snow sport. As a child he competed in trampoline and tried aerials in the Olympic park in Park City, Utah, where he became enthralled with the tricks the freeskiers were throwing. The rest is history. Click here to vote for Williams.
7. U.S. Women’s Water Polo World Championship Team. The U.S. women’s water polo team is in the midst of an unprecedented streak of dominance. The two-time reigning Olympic gold medalists won their second consecutive world title in 2017, and they currently hold all major titles in water polo: Olympic Games, FINA World Championship, FINA World Cup, FINA World League and Pan American Games. Click here to vote for the U.S. Women’s Water Polo World Championship Team.
8. Lindsey Jacobellis. Jacobellis is the most decorated snowboardcross racer in history, with 28 world cup wins and 48 podium appearances in 80 starts. In 2017 she won an unprecedented fifth straight world title in as many starts, and is the first snowboarder or freestyle skier to win a world title in one event more than three times. Click here to vote for Jacobellis.
9. Caeleb Dressel. Dressel won seven gold medals at the 2017 FINA World Championships, matching the record set by Michael Phelps in 2007. But perhaps his most staggering accomplishment is winning three of those medals in a single day, and within a 98-minute span. Click here to vote for Dressel.
10. Elana Meyers Taylor and Kehri Jones. While Elana Meyers Taylor has been the backbone of the U.S. women’s bobsled team for many years, but brakeman Kehri Jones only began dipping her toes into the bobsled waters in 2014. Her career picked up in 2015, and she pushed Meyers Taylor to world championship gold in 2017. Click here to vote for Meyers Taylor and Jones.
11. Helen Maroulis. Maroulis was just 17 years old when she made her first senior world championship team in 2008. She competed to an eighth-place finish that year and has since gone on to win two world titles and an Olympic gold medal. Click here to vote for Maroulis.
12. Mikaela Shiffrin. Shiffrin is a skiing phenom, competing in her first world cups at age 15 and notching her first world cup podium at 16. With 31 victories now to her name and still just 22 years old, she has many more in front of her. Click here to vote for Shiffrin.
13. Sam Kendricks. Kendricks won the pole vault world title in August, after winning the U.S. title and before winning the Diamond League title. He set seven of the year’s top 13 vaults en route to an undefeated season. Click here to vote for Kendricks.