Tommy Moe

Tommy Moe Biography.com

Athlete(1970–)
Tommy Moe became the first American skier to win two medals in one year of the Olympics by claiming gold and silver honors at the 1994 Winter Games.

Synopsis

Born on February 17, 1970, in Missoula, Montana, Tommy Moe learned to ski at age 3. He struggled to fulfill his promise as a junior champion until the 1994 Winter Olympics, where he won gold and silver to become the first American skier to earn two medals within one year of the Olympics. Moe retired from international competition in 1998 and was added to the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame and Museum in 2003.

Early Life

Olympic skier Thomas Sven Moe, Jr. was born on February 17, 1970, in Missoula, Montana. His father, Tom, Sr., was a ski patrolman at the Montana resort Big Mountain, and Moe was introduced to the sport at age 3.

Moe displayed so much promise on the slopes that he signed an endorsement deal with Dynastar Skis at age 13. However, he was banned from competitions in the Montana-Idaho region after getting caught smoking marijuana at an event, and was sent to live with his father in Alaska.

Ski Career

Moe got his act together under the watch of Tom, Sr. and earned an invite to the U.S. National Alpine Championships at Copper Mountain, Colorado, as a 15-year-old. He claimed a silver medal in the downhill at the 1987 World Junior Championships in Norway, and two years later won golds in the Super G and combined events in the World Junior Championships at Mount Alyeska, Alaska.

After joining the World Cup circuit in 1990, Moe struggled to build on the success he had achieved at the junior level. He competed for the U.S. team at the 1992 Olympics in Albertville, France, but finished no higher than 18th in his three events.

Moe took a hiatus from the pressure of competitive skiing before rededicating himself to training. It turned out to be a winning strategy, as he finished fifth in the downhill at the 1993 World Championships in Japan, and earned his first World Cup medal with a silver in the downhill at Whistler Mountain in British Columbia, Canada.

1994 Winter Olympics

Still without a World Cup victory to his name, Moe surprised fans by racing to a gold medal in the downhill at the 1994 Winter Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway. Four days later, he celebrated his 24th birthday with a silver medal in the Super G, becoming the first American skier to win two medals within one year of the Olympics. Building on the momentum, he finally earned his first World Cup gold with a victory at Whistler after the Olympics ended.

Moe's time at the top of the skiing world was short lived; he tore ligaments in his right knee in 1995, and missed most of the 1997 World Cup season with a severed tendon in his thumb. Moe was back to full health in time for the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan, but his best showing was an eighth-place finish. Shortly afterward, he announced his retirement from international competition at age 28.

Personal Life

After retiring, Moe tended to business interests and satisfied his urges for outdoor activity through kayaking, mountain biking, fishing and plenty of skiing.

In 2003, the two-time Olympic medalist was inducted into the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame and Museum. That year, he also married his longtime girlfriend, Megan Gerety, a former U.S. Ski team member.

Moe went on to serve as a ski guide and ambassador for Jackson Hole Resort in Wyoming. He also co-owns Tordrillo Mountain Lodge near the Denali National Park & Preserve in Alaska.

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