First Olympic Halfpipe and Slopestyle Athletes Announced
Tonight, 11 athletes were nominated to the first-ever U.S. Freeskiing Olympic team. (Photo: Sarah Brunson/U.S. Freeskiing)
PARK CITY, UT (Jan. 18) – Freeskiing took another historic step towards its Olympic debut as the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association announced the nomination of 11 halfpipe and slopestyle skiing athletes Saturday night at the conclusion of the Visa U.S. Freeskiing Grand Prix presented by The North Face. The events will be contested for the first time in Sochi. The five event qualifying series took selection down to the wire, with nine of the 11 spots determined in the two-event finale at Park City Mountain Resort. The formal naming of the 2014 U.S. Olympic Team by the United States Olympic Committee is set for Jan. 27.
The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association announced the nomination of 11 halfpipe and slopestyle athletes to compete in the debut of the new events in the Olympic Winter Games.
The athletes qualified by objective criteria over the five-event Visa U.S. Freeskiing Grand Prix presented by The North Face, culminating in a pair of competitions at Park City Mountain Resort.
The USSA is expected to announce additional nominations in both halfpipe and slopestyle pending final quota allocations in the coming week.
The U.S. Olympic Committee will formally name the 2014 U.S. Olympic Team on January 27.
2014 OLYMPIC HALFPIPE AND SLOPESTYLE NOMINATIONS NOTE: Only athletes who achieved objective selection criteria are presently nominated. Additional athletes may be added.
Men’s Halfpipe David Wise, Reno, NV (6/30/1990) Aaron Blunck, Crested Butte, CO (4/12/1996) Lyman Currier, Boulder, CO (8/28/1994)
Women’s Halfpipe Maddie Bowman, S. Lake Tahoe, CA (1/10/1994) Brita Sigourney, Carmel, CA (1/17/1990) Angeli VanLaanen, Bellingham, WA (10/24/1985)
Men’s Slopestyle Nick Goepper, Lawrenceburg, IN (3/14/1994) Bobby Brown, Breckenridge, CO (6/5/1991) Gus Kenworthy, Telluride, CO (10/01/1991)
QUOTES Jeremy Forster, Director of Freeskiing and Snowboarding, USSA This is an historic moment for the sport of freeskiing. It was clear throughout the five-event Grand Prix qualifying series that we had a growing depth of top athletes who were pushing the sport to new levels. That fact that the majority of the team spots went down to the last events is a testament to the athletic ability of the U.S. skiers.
Mike Jankowski, Head Halfpipe and Slopestyle Coach, U.S. Freeskiing The level of competition for the Olympic spots was amazingly intense – we definitely saw a new level of competition. To have so many spots come down to the final event is indicative of the depth we have across these sports in America. We will be taking a team to Sochi that is well prepared to compete for medals.
All nominations are subject to approval by the U.S. Olympic Committee.