It’s finally here! The Winter Olympics commenced on Feb. 9 in Pyeongchang (평창), South Korea. This international sports competition always attract strong athletes to the world stage — including some of our favorite #girlbosses. Dozens of talented female athletes are competing for gold, silver and bronze medals, but here are eight especially inspiring female athletes to watch.
1. Chloe Kim, Snowboarding
Kim was unable to make it to the 2014 games due to her age, but she is now ready for the 2018 Winter Olympics. As a three-time X Games halfpipe gold medalist and the first woman to land back-to-back 1080s in a halfpipe competition, Kim has already become a dominating force in the snowboarding world. The 17-year-old is ready to make her Olympic debut and take the world by storm.
2. Lindsey Vonn, Alpine Skiing
Vonn won a 2010 Winter Olympic gold medal, but she wasn’t able to defend it during the 2014 Winter Olympics due to injury. After putting in countless hours of hard work, she’s back and better than ever. Vonn is ready to make her comeback and to earn her medals once again.
3. Mikaela Shiffrin, Alpine Skiing
Shiffrin is regarded as the best female slalom skier in the world. After becoming the youngest Olympic slalom gold medalist in the 2014 Winter Olympics, she hopes become the first person to win back-to-back Olympic slalom gold medals this year.
4. Maame Biney, Short Track Speed Skating
Biney was born in Ghana and moved to the USA when she was 5 years old. She dominated the Olympic trials, winning 500m race. She is the first African American woman to make the U.S. Olympic speed skating team.
5. Maia Shibutani, Ice Dancing
Shibutani makes up half of the brother-and-sister ice-dancing duo “Shib Sibs.” Although Shibutani began her career as a single skater, she teamed up with her brother in 2004. Ever since, they have been winning national championships. They placed ninth in the 2014 Winter Olympics.
6. Hilary Knight, Hockey
The former Wisconsin Badger will be making her third Olympic appearance alongside fellow Badger and captain Meghan Duggan. As a forward for Team USA, she has helped the team win a silver medal in the last two Olympic games. This year, she’s hoping her fiery play will bring back an Olympic gold to the women’s team.
7. Elana Meyers Taylor, Bobsledding
Meyers Taylor has already made her mark in the history books by being the first black pilot to win an Olympic medal and the first U.S. woman to win two bobsled Olympic medals. With a silver and bronze medal in her pocket, she is ready to add gold to her collection.
8. Maddie Bowman, Freestyle Skiing
Bowman took gold for the women’s halfpipe in 2014. Despite suffering an ACL injury in 2015, she has come back stronger than ever. If she’s able to win a gold medal again, she will be the first two-time female gold medalist in the event.
As you watch the Olympics, pay attention to these incredible female athletes. Remember, the Olympics started on Feb. 9, so get your friends together and cheer on Team USA.