Michigan's Nick Baumgartner Makes Fourth Olympics
Nick Baumgartner, who lives in Iron River in the Wolverine State's Upper Peninsula and calls Ski Brule his “home hill,” has achieved the criteria to be named to his fourth Winter Olympics. Having competed for 2010, 2014, and 2018 U. S. Olympic Snowboard Cross teams, the 40-year-old will be the oldest Olympic snowboarder in American history.
The age-defying snowboarder won a silver medal in the men's world cup snowboard cross event in Austria in December, and it was his second podium finish of the season. He is the highest-ranked American at fifth in the World Cup standings. His best Olympic finish, a fourth place, came in the 2018 games in PyeongChang. He's won gold and silver medals in past Winter X Games and won World Cup and World Championships.
“What a way to start the season,” Baumgartner posted on Instagram. “I am happy, excited, blown away. This is why you should work as hard as you can for what you want.”
When he made the 2018 Olympic team he told the Mining Journal in his hometown, “I wish I could explain in words what it's like to walk out in the opening ceremonies wearing your country's colors. It's an unbelievable feeling, and I'm extremely proud to represent the United States. My goal is to win a medal and bring it back home to Michigan.”
Baumgartner has always called the UP home and honed his early skills at Ski Brule, where he's been training recently before heading overseas to the Olympic games. He's still chasing that dream and has the same fire and desire to pull it off in his fourth attempt. A true “Yooper,” which is a proud idiom for those that call Michigan's UP home.