SKIING's interview with one of the U.S.'s top freestylers.
SHANNON BAHRKE, 21
Tahoe City, California
Reigning U.S. dual moguls champion; 15 career top 10's in World Cup competition (including two fourth-place finishes on the Olympic mogul course at Deer Valley.)
Known both as "Sparky" and "Odie" among teammates because of her ceaseless happy-go-lucky enthusiasm, Bahrke did not start competing until age 12, but made the U.S. Team when she was only 17.
On her heels:
"I worry about the people coming up because I know how much you want it when you're new. Jen Howe is a new girl from Canada and she's definitely aggressive and wants it and is a very good skier. She and Hannah Hardaway. They're my closest competition. The older people, I don't really know how they're thinking. Maybe they're much more mentally advanced or have an edge. But I know how the younger girls are and I know that we all have ambition to be number one."
"I'm out there to have fun. Some people are out there to get results. If I go up there with a smile on my face and come out with a smile on my face, that's much better than if I had done a perfect twister spread."
In another life:
"I'd be a dancer. It's my favorite thing. I would love to do that or be really smart. And be taller. I'd love to be six-foot." (Bahrke is 5'4".)
"Ten or twelve. A lot more than what it should be for my weight, probably!"
"I ski in glitter. It's good-luck glitter."
Cranking it up:
"I'm working on my heli cross. I'm so sick of the double twister spread."
People would be surprised to know...
"I think Ricky Martin is hot!"