The 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing will be a homecoming for 17-year-old skiing phenom Kai Owens ... and the Team USA superstar tells TMZ Sports she can't wait to return to her birth country for the very first time.
Owens' story is inspirational -- she was abandoned by her birth parents as an infant and was adopted by a Colorado couple when she was around 16 months old.
Now, the mogul skier is set to make the ultimate return and compete at the highest level during the 2022 Games ... and she tells us it's going to be an incredible experience.
"I'm just trying to explore everything I can and enjoy the moment," she told us at LAX this week.
Owens says she won't try to track down her biological parents during the trip ... but plans to make a return to China after the Games if the pandemic calms down.
"Right now, I'm mainly focused on competing, but my family and I have plans to return to China once COVID allows us to, to kind of go back to the province that I was born in and maybe do some birth parents research," Owens said.
"My primary goal for this trip is the Olympic games, but I'm definitely hoping to do a cultural experience later this year."
Owens is going to be a household name eventually -- she placed 6th in the World Championships in 2021 -- and she says she's fully focused on giving it 100% next month.