‘Greatest Feeling in the World': Wauconda's Kevin Bickner Proud to Rep US in Pyeongchang

Kevin Bickner is only 21 and holds the American record for ski jumping.

He’ll not only represent the U.S. but the city of Chicago in Pyeongchang--a dream he’s had since he was a kid.

Sitting atop a 120 meter hill Bickner said he still feels some butterflies.

"That all goes away when you push off the bar," he told NBC 5. "I mean, there’s no turning back at that point. You have to go for it."

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When Bickner takes off he soars through the air before sticking the landing.

"It’s the greatest feeling in the world," he said.

To most, ski jumping is daunting, but for Bickner the adrenaline bug bit early.

"He took to it right away, he was a little dare devil," said Bickner's aunt Tanora Schreiner. "He used to go to the sand dunes in Indiana and bring his skis and ski down the sand dunes."

The Wauconda native started jumping at the Norge Ski Club in Fox River Grove.

"At first it was just something that they were doing and then it was like 'oh, Kevin’s pretty good,'" Cchreiner said.

His aunts say Kevin's parents had to make a tough decision: to allow their young son to move to Park City, Utah to train to full-time.

That decision would pay off.

Today, Bickner holds the American record for ski jumping. He got it last spring when he cleared the distance of nearly 3 football fields.

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Now Bickner is headed to Pyeongchang for the 2018 winter Olympic games, something he predicted years ago.

"I’m really proud to be from Chicago and representing not only my country but my city," Bickner told NBC 5.

He will be joined by teammates Mike Glasder, of Cary, and Casey Larson of Barrington.

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