Both were destined to be skiers thanks to their family heritage.
And as of Friday, Bryce Bennett and Ryan Cochran-Siegle are going to the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 together.
Both alpine skiers qualified for the Olympic team in the combined event following today’s world cup race in Wengen, Switzerland. Bennett stole the show, finishing ninth to tie his career-best combined result that he reached in January 2016.
His top-10 finish earned him a spot on the 2018 U.S. Olympic Team. Cochran-Siegle who was 18th on Wednesday, made the team based on his world cup points. He was the next highest American in the world cup rankings with 31 points after placing 14th in the only other combined race held in late December in Bormio, Italy.
Both men will be headed to their first Olympics.
Bennett’s father was a former telemark racer, while his mother worked at Alpine Meadows Resort in Squaw Valley, California. He was on skis at age 2 and followed in the footsteps of fellow U.S. Ski Team greats Julia Mancuso, Travis Ganong and Marco Sullivan, all of whom also grew up on the slopes of Squaw Valley.
He joined the U.S. Ski Team in 2011 after a spring tryout camp and, though he missed out on the 2014 Olympic team, he saw his breakout season come in 2015. In December of that year, Bennett went from the 57th starting position to cross the finish line in sixth at a downhill world cup in Val Gardena, Italy. It remains his highest world cup finish.
Cochran-Siegle, 25, grew up knowing exactly what an Olympic gold medal was because his mother, Barbara Ann Cochran, won one in 1972 in slalom. Other Olympians in his famous family – the Skiing Cochrans – include his aunts Lindy and Marilyn Cochran, uncle Bob Cochran and cousin Jimmy Cochran.
After winning junior world titles in downhill and combined in 2012, he missed significant time between 2013 and 2016 recovering from injuries. His combined run in Bormio marked his best world cup finish this season, while the best result of his career was a 10th-place finish at a combined world cup in December 2016 in Santa Caterina, Italy.