Eyewitness to the Olympics: Nick Goepper and TODAY in Sochi

Nick Goepper from Lawrenceburg, Indiana
Published: .
Updated: .

The mild temperatures in Sochi continue Tuesday and it's a contributing factor to problems with the snowboarding half pipe, as well as in the alpine area.

The medal competition is today, with Shaun White going for his third gold medal in the snowboard halfpipe.  The women take part in slopestyle skiing and the rising temperatures are impacting the course.  Some of the athletes are worried about some of the consistency of snow.

Many in Indiana are looking ahead to Thursday and competition day for Nick Goepper of Lawrenceburg. He's competing in the slopestyle skiing event.

We talked with Bob Kravitz from the Indianapolis Star.  He's in Sochi, on loan to USA Today, but he says he will take a break from that assignment to travel to the alpine areas to watch Goepper, because he says the Goepper story is a classic one - hard work and drive that is paying off.  Bob says, "To think you can come from Lawrenceburg.. and he's not just showing up.. he's got a chance to win a medal.  He's got a good chance to do some amazing things (in Sochi)."

Nick's family is in Sochi.  They went to go see the women's USA hockey game. For some, it's a family affair, but for many people working the Winter Olympic games, it means weeks away from their family.

Eyewitness News went behind the scenes of the TODAY show.  Matt Lauer has been in Sochi a week already, but this is the first week with the full team of Al Roker, Savannah Guthrie, Natalie Morales and Jenna Bush.  They say they like that with the time change (Sochi is nine hours ahead of New York), they are working a day side schedule, so they don't miss the early morning alarm. However, they do miss their children. 

Jenna Bush says her daughter turns 10 months on Thursday.  Jenna says, "I teared up first time saw her and it's hard, but there are working mothers all over the world.  If they can do it, I can do it."

Watch for more reports from Anne Marie Tiernon and Dave Calabro on Eyewitness News at here on our website, wthr.com.