RIDGEFIELD, Conn. – Team Tucker, the support group united behind Ridgefield Olympian Tucker West, is mobilizing for the upcoming Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.
West, 18, will compete for the United States in the luge at the Olympics, which begin Thursday.
His supporters in Ridgefield will gather Saturday, Feb. 8, at the Ridgefield Playhouse to watch him compete in his first race. The event begins at 9 a.m., and is free and open to the public.
Many of West’s supporters have purchased “Team Tucker” T-shirts. A note on the team Tucker Facebook page said 750 shirts were sold out as of Wednesday. Posters in support of Tucker can be picked up at William Pitt Sotheby’s at 470 Main St. or at the Ridgefield Playhouse. Some yard signs have also popped up at homes in Ridgefield.
West was also featured in a story on www.teamusa.org on athletes who competed in the Youth Olympic Games and are now competing in the Olympics.
“Competing in the Youth Olympics was a career-changing event,” West said in the story. “Although it wasn’t the Olympics, it was still a great honor to be able to compete under the Olympic flame. This was the first time that I was able to hang with athletes from other sports who were competing at the same caliber that I was. The Youth Olympics in a way gave me an extra drive to work harder toward my goal of competing in the Olympic Games. They gave me a tiny taste of what the Olympics could be like, and from the moment I got there I knew I wanted more.”
West graduated from high school last June and attends Union College in New York. West and his family arrived in Austria on Thursday and will be heading to Russia for the games next week.