Torah Bright. Photo: Scott Serfas

Age: 23 (December 27, 1986)

Hometown: Cooma, New South Wales

Stance: Goofy

Board team: Roxy

Recent results: Superpipe wins at the 2009 X Games, the 2009 Dew Tour Toyota Championships, and the 2009 Burton U.S. Open.

Olympic outlook: The reigning queen of tech-trick wizardry, Torah Bright stood at the top of many a major podium in the past year. Shunning the typical frontside five to seven to nine combinations, she won the U.S. Open last season with a run that included a backside 360, a Crippler, and the über-difficult switch backside 720. Her runs are often flawlessly smooth, but because they’re so technical, they sometimes lack the no-holds-barred explosiveness of Kelly and Gretchen’s riding, for instance. However, she has won time and again against this field with such skillful runs, and like the handful of other riders who barely missed podium status at the last Olympics (she placed fifth in Torino after dislocating her shoulder in the finals), Torah will be gunning for redemption.

Potential downfall: Torah’s runs bank on difficulty more than wow-factor, and you have to be a fellow snowboarder with a keen eye to appreciate this. She has mentioned that she felt like the judges in Torino, um, didn’t. Maybe things will be different this time? Torah is also coming off a series of concussions—three in total, an issue that kept her sidelined during the 2010 winter X Games.

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