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."
Irma, From Puerto Rico
Less than a week after Hurricane Harvey devastated Houston, another hurricane, Irma, tracked toward the United States mainland. Gaining strength, Irma battered Caribbean islands as it moved through the early part of the week, which is when Olympic water polo gold medalist Jessica Steffens began tweeting from Irma’s path while in Puerto Rico …
In Puerto Rico - We'd really appreciate more science given this unprecedented storm https://t.co/u4dKvUtotT— Jessica Steffens (@JessSteffens) September 5, 2017
Condado - Rain again, changed direction, now coming from the north west #IrmaPR— Jessica Steffens (@JessSteffens) September 6, 2017
3 hour domino game, everyone was leading at one point, but my Kapicu helped me get the W #IrmaPR— Jessica Steffens (@JessSteffens) September 6, 2017
Steffens are safe! Praying for those still in Irma's path and USVI Culebra Barbuda St. Martin St. Barts #IrmaPR— Jessica Steffens (@JessSteffens) September 7, 2017
Hello, New Zealand (And Goodbye)
For a winter athlete, ‘snow time like the present to visit New Zealand. Team USA has been rolling elite Paralympians and Olympians through the stunning and snowy landscape for the past few weeks now, and it has not disappointed. Currently competing or training …
Olympic gold medalist snowboarder Jamie Anderson prepped for what turned out to be a season-opening win to the Slopestyle World Cup season with some yoga …
Teen snowboarding phenom Chloe Kim was finding her visibility severely limited …
And a few from Olympic gold and two-time Olympic bronze medalist Kelly Clark, who along with Kim gave Team USA three of six spots in the final. Congratulations are also in order for Team USA’s Maddie Mastro, who ranked No. 1 after qualification.
Overall, things went pretty well heading into the weekend for the duo …
Olympic snowboarding gold medalist and star Shaun White was en route, too …
Unfortunately for White, his time on the snow was short-lived …
Not exactly the birthday I was hoping for .....I under rotated a double flip that sent me to the hospital. The biggest scare was seeing blood in my urine but after the tests all came back looking good I was released to go home. Life's going to knock you down.... get up, learn from your mistakes, and you'll be better for it! see you back on the mountain soon🏂
Jessica Steffens' sister, two-time Olympic water polo champion and star Maggie Steffens, may not be competing in New Zealand, but she sure does enjoy the view.
Paralympic star Nicole Roundy managed to stop and enjoy the view …
Alpine skier Mark Engel, who has already shown an affinity for laying down some tracks, is pretty good with a guitar on a cabin fever kind of day …
He also caught a pretty good rainbow …
For Sochi Olympian David Chodounsky, leaving New Zealand behind is such sweet sorrow …
The same is true of Keith Gabel, a 2014 Paralympic bronze medalist …
As was the case last time I came here, it is so tough leaving #NewZealand. I had so much fun getting to tour around both the North and South Island and also competing in the #audiquattrowintergames. We got to see so much and also meet up with some old friends as well as make some new ones. Thanks @taylerrae @blairpaterson and @onorris1 for helping make this trip even better than we ever could have on our own. Also huge thank you to our coaching staff @grahamwatanabe @codybx @lozares Skiddy and Luke Byers for all your hard work. If you're ever looking for the end of the rainbow just stop off at this little group of islands in the South Pacific and I'm sure you'll agree it resides here. This country will always have a special place in my heart. The one thing making this next flight a bit easier, is knowing that I have an amazing wife and our puppy waiting for me at home . . . #pictureswillneverdoitjustice #sherrybdessert #LiveWithPassion #MemoriesBeforeThings #WildernessCulture #SmilesForMiles #YourVibeAttractsYourTribe #SoulSqueeze #EmitYourOwnFrequency #gratitude #ThankYouMotherEarth #Lovethelifeyoulive #NoBadDays #tooblessedtobestressed #OptOutside #GetOutside #StarveYourEgo #FeedYourSoul #KeepTheirHeartsWild #KeepItContagious #adventuretime #versafoot @nike @sherrybdessert @biodapt @shortydoowop3 @teamusa @usparalympics #teamusa #usparalympics
While we’re in New Zealand, why not take a look at what some might consider to be a terrifying plummet into a gorge, but others, such as Sochi cross-country skiing Olympian and PyeongChang hopeful Jessie Diggins considers a new and exciting leisure activity.
Diggins has been big on leaping in New Zealand this week.
Meanwhile, In …
Chile: Alpine skiing star and Olympic champion Mikaela Shiffrin can get a perfectly timed shot of the sun but she can’t get donuts.
All’s fair in love and competition, but you can’t, in the day and age of DVRs and binge watching, go and hint idly about what endings one might spoil. Right, Sydney Leroux Dwyer?
Power season Finale Tonight!! 😬 i cannot wait!!!!— Crystal Dunn (@crysdunn_19) September 3, 2017
If you tweet any spoilers our friendship could end. Love you. https://t.co/TTgCEQlzFJ— Sydney Leroux Dwyer (@sydneyleroux) September 4, 2017
Labor Day? Yep
Dozens of Team USA athletes marked the occasion of Labor Day by, on the tail end of their long weekend, laboring. U.S. Olympic Women’s Hockey Team captain Meghan Duggan even dragged a handful of skaters with her.
Olympic alpine skiing champion Lindsey Vonn could be seen throwing some weight around.
Rio rowing Olympian Meghan O’Leary saw a bit more traffic than usual, but she did get the oars in the water.
Celebrated #LaborDay with another day of hard work on the water...and dodging about a hundred fishing boats and kayaks. 🙄 No time for a holiday when there are just 20 days until the 2017 World Championships. 💪🏼 . . #leggo #nodaysoff #everydaycounts #berelentless #WRChamps #GoUSA #rowing @wrch2017 @usrowing @worldrowingofficial @teamusa
Paralympics legend Tatyana McFadden knocked out some miles, too.
Olympic bobsledding hopeful Lauren Gibbs also made Labor Day count.
Since winning her third gold in as many years at three different weight classes, Olympic wrestling champion Helen Maroulis seems to have been enjoying some downtime, beginning in London and then making her way to stunning Greece.
Bowling Green State University may not be known for its notable Olympic stars, but, in addition to a pair of 1980 Miracle on Ice players, there is also Olympic figure skating champion Scott Hamilton and Dave Wottle. On the anniversary of a race that, especially if you haven’t seen it, is an absolute must-watch, Hamilton made sure to celebrate the event, and their alma mater, on his timeline.
On This Date …
On this date in history, Team USA’s elite Paralympians saw the fruits of so much hard work pay off in Rio.
This is what happiness looks like https://t.co/7cByeD9wr9— Michelle Konkoly (@michellekonkoly) September 8, 2017
Outlaws For A Day
Now broadcasters, men’s soccer Olympians Stuart Holden and Alexi Lalas enjoyed a night of leisure this past week to watch Team USA from the stands. Pre-game, they found a few of Lalas’ biggest, if unsuspecting, fans.
Unaware victim #2 - poor jersey purchases pic.twitter.com/h0cXCbpPcJ— Stuart Holden (@stuholden) September 1, 2017
We followed along with two-time Paralympian and Paratriathlon world champion Melissa Stockwell as she gave birth to her second child, and she has reached a milestone: Stockwell is back in the pool.
For a reminder of the trade from working out that Stockwell would make a million times …
Wow, is this all class, all around. WNBA star and four-time Olympic gold medalist Sue Bird, in her 16th year in Seattle, broke the league’s career assist record this past week with No. 2,600, eclipsing the career total of Ticha Penicheiro. Bird’s first post after breaking the record? A mosaic pic honoring her teammates.
Then, Penicheiro goes and drops her own classy post, touting Bird’s “class, charisma, passion, humility, efficiency, professionalism and creativity.”
Sue, Congratulations on becoming the all-time assist record holder. Records are meant to be broken and if somebody is going to take your "crown", you want it to be somebody like you. You do it with class, charisma, passion, humility, efficiency, professionalism and creativity...always leading your team and your teammates!! You have done so much for the game, not just here with the WNBA, in the US, but all over the world! Continue to be an example of how to play the game the right way and continue to inspire people around the world to play basketball. I will continue to cheer every dime you throw...because I am - and will always be - a fan!!! 2️⃣1️⃣🥈➡️1️⃣0️⃣🥇👑😁 Ticha Penicheiro