MADISON, Wisc. — U.S. Ski Jumper Anna Hoffmann is the longest of long shots. At one point a sixth alternate, the Madison native now wants you to know her name.
Hoffmann doesn't mind introducing herself. Especially when even she thought her Olympic dream was over.
"It is Anna," Hoffmann emphasizes the pronunciation. "But Anna is okay too. I respond to both, but I think if my mom saw the news thing, she'd be mad if I didn't say something."
She joined Team USA as a late entry and is now officially a part of the 2022 U.S. Olympic Ski Jumping Team.
"A dream that I've been wanting to accomplish for so long kind of passed me by," Hoffmann says. "Waiting four years is a long time."
Then two nations returned quota spots. Four of the top five alternate nations declined their spots. Miraculously, Anna got the call and then made an emotional call to her mom in Madison.
"It's been a crazy roller-coaster of ups and downs," Hoffmann says. "I am just ecstatic that this is even an option."
So, she'll have fun with it.
"I am just there to jump my best, have fun and really just show the world that this is the sport I do because I love it," Hoffmann says. "Not because I crave fame."
Hoffman says you have to be somewhat crazy to do this sport.
"But the thing is, is as you get used to a certain thrill, you get used to it. So it's not as much of a shock to your brain."
She also has to deal with her Madison and Midwest roots in a sport dominated by other countries and regions of the United States.
"There's always jokes being made about how Midwestern ski jumpers. We don't have the best equipment, or like, we're just kind of huckin' it," Hoffmann says.
But she's proud to rep Madison and wears her Badger state roots on her ski suit.
"Madison has a work hard mentality," Hoffmann says. "We like to do things well. If we're given the opportunity to do things, you'll try your dang hardest."
Four years ago as a teen she battled anxiety, but she says she's a different person and is more resilient and has learned how to control it these days.