Meghan - minnetonka, Minnesota
Entered on February 27, 2009
Age Group: Under 18
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I had always dreamed about being an athlete since I was young. Growing up, I new that athletes take risks all the time. I believe that by taking risk you can achieve your greatest hopes and dreams.

I didn’t have a sport that I particularly liked. I lived in California and did Gymnastics, Soccer, and T-ball. My family and I skied a lot but never thought much of it. In second grade I moved to Minnesota and stopped Gymnastics and only played Soccer and Fastpitch. In 5th grade I started Snowboarding and loved it! I had no friends that could Ski or Snowboard. I decide to join a team called the G- team. I was scared but new I had to take a risk. That year on the team I made a ton of friends most of them guys. Never did I think I was great at snowboarding. I could turn, hit jumps, and ride a racing board; never once did I think I could win a national event. In 8th grade my third year on the team I went to nationals at copper mountain Colorado. I raced in Slalom and Giant slalom hoping for a top ten finish. I remember being nervous as can be. You could here cow bells and people cheering for there fellow teammates a mile away. It was hot and the snow was wet. My coach came up to me right before my run and said “do you want to win? Or do you just want to place well?” I was confused winning is placing well. I didn’t say anything, in my head all I thought was dose he really think I can win? Like first… he told me to answer him. I replied by saying “I don’t know? When you say win do you mean first?” he said “yes,” that’s when I decide to go for it. He told me that I had to take a risk and ride the edge of the snow next to the gate. The bad part about that strategy is that if you mess up you risk getting bucked out of the course. I told him that I would go for it and just see how it works out. I took my first run at each gate not thinking about what he said but just trying to get to the bottom as fast as I could. At the end of my run I didn’t think it was good enough. After my friend took her run we went to the chair, at the top people started congratulating me. I didn’t know why they were telling me I did so well, and that I was the fastest girl they had ever met. My team mate saw me and came running towards me he said “you just beat everyone by at least 3 seconds! You beat all the guys too!” I was in shock; I didn’t know what to say.

I ended up winning both Slalom and Giant slalom; maybe someday by taking risks I will achieve greater things in life then just a snowboard race. I realized that by taking a risk I achieved what I had always dreamed of being a true athlete, the kind that wins tournaments not because there team is good but because of me; myself. This I believe.