Winter Games Athletes
Anything less than gold will be a disappointment for White and partner Meryl Davis in Sochi, which seems like an odd statement to make considering the U.S. has never finished at the top of the podium in Olympic ice dancing. In fact, the country had gone seven Olympics without medaling in the sport at all before Tanith Belbin and Benjamin Agosto won silver in 2006, with White and Davis matching that second-place finish four years later in Vancouver. White and Davis teamed up in 1997 while growing up 10 minutes apart from each other in Michigan. Their parents are best friends, and the on-ice relationship between the two has been unparalleled in recent years. They’re the five-time reigning U.S. champions and have won silver or gold each of the last four world championships. In 2011, they became the first American ice dancing champs at the worlds. They’ve won 15 golds and three bronze medals in Grand Prix events and are the only ice dancing team to win the Grand Prix Final title five times. Since the 2010 Olympics, White and Davis have earned gold in 17 of the 19 events they’ve entered. They finished nearly 19 points better than silver medalists Madison Chock and Evan Bates at the 2014 U.S. championships, reminding the world that they’re the clear favorites in Sochi. Their closest competition, oddly enough, shares the same training rink. Canadian rivals Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, the reigning Olympic gold medalists, not only train in that Michigan facility, but share the same coaches. White and Davis, however, have gotten the better of Virtue and Moir in their last four head-to-head meetings.