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Countdown to the 2022 Olympic Winter Games

Mammoth Grand Prix: History of Progression

By Andrew Gauthier
January, 7 2020
Greg Bretz
U.S. Snowboard Team Alumnus and Mammoth Mountain local Greg Bretz launching out of the halfpipe at the 2018 U.S. Grand Prix at Mammoth Mountain, Calif. (U.S. Ski & Snowboard - Sarah Brunson)

The final stop of the Land Rover U.S. Grand Prix will be held at Mammoth Mountain Ski Area in California’s Eastern Sierra Jan. 29-Feb. 1. The event will host men and women’s FIS World Cup halfpipe and slopestyle competition. 

Mammoth Mountain has proved its ability to breed talent and foster a culture of athletic development that almost seems embedded in the mountain’s DNA. Mixed with a healthy amount of natural snowfall and the world-class Unbound Terrain Parks, it’s the perfect formula to set athletes up for success. Over the years, you can see evidence of these elements coming to fruition through groundbreaking athletic performances and milestone moments. 

Mammoth’s ties to U.S. Olympic Freeski and Snowboard Team selections are second to none. Mammoth has hosted the Grand Prix more than 10 times, and has been fortunate enough to name our Olympic athletes three times including in 1998—the first year the Olympics hosted snowboard halfpipe as an official event. Mammoth also hosted the final qualifying event before the 2014 and 2018 Olympic Winter Games. Furthermore, the U.S. Snowboard Team has been utilizing Mammoth’s amazing terrain and facilities since early 2001, when halfpipe coach Pete del Giudice took Ross Powers and Kelly Clark to Mammoth to train prior to the 2002 Salt Lake City Games. It’s evident Mammoth had something to offer as both Ross and Kelly went on to win Olympic halfpipe gold medals.

Kelly’s journey with Mammoth came full circle when she qualified for her fifth and final Olympic team in 2018 at her home resort, under the lights, complete with fireworks and an amazing high-energy crowd. Joining Kelly that night to celebrate their Olympic nominations was Shaun White and Chloe Kim, who both went on to take home gold medals in Pyeongchang. Chloe and Shaun both call Mammoth Mountain their home resort, so it was fitting that their training and official nominations took place under the shadow of the 11,053 ft peak. 

There are countless athlete achievements that have taken place at Mammoth Mountain by U.S. Ski & Snowboard athletes thanks to over a decade long training and event partnership with Mammoth Mountain. Chloe, who is the only woman to ever land back-to-back 1080’s in the halfpipe, revealed she learned a 1260 at Mammoth along with most of her other big tricks. U.S. Snowboard Pro team athlete Maddie Mastro put the double crippler to her feet for the first time at a spring training camp at Mammoth in 2018. Maddie went on to land this trick at the Burton U.S. Open the following year to make history landing the first-ever double crippler by a female snowboarder in competition and win the event. In June of 2018, three-time Olympic medalist Jamie Anderson landed her first double-cork 900 with the safety net of the airbag. This trick has since contributed to Jamie adding another Winter X Games gold medal to her collection in 2018 in Aspen, Colo. 

The men also have no shortage of progression and career firsts at Mammoth Mountain. Over the past few years amazing moments have unfolded, including American freeskier Kyle Smaine earning his first-ever World Cup victory in the last competition of his career at the 2018 Mammoth Grand Prix, narrowly missing qualifying for the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympic Winter Games. In 2019, U.S. Freeski Pro Team members Birk Irving and Mac Forehand earned their first-ever World Cup victories at the Mammoth U.S. Grand Prix. 

On the snowboard side, Judd Henkes also earned himself his first-ever World Cup podium, finishing second behind Gerard in 2019. This past spring, U.S. Snowboard Team veteran Taylor Gold was able to find the rotation on a Michalchuck 1080 into the airbag. Since then, Gold is the first rider to ever land it in the halfpipe, but has yet to attempt the trick in competition. 

The progression at the Mammoth Mountain Grand Prix is not limited to athlete performances, but also in their willingness and ability to host pinnacle events. During the 2016-17 season, U.S. Ski & Snowboard broke the mold of the Olympic qualification process by hosting an Olympic selection event the season prior to the 2018 Pyeongchang Games as a result of athlete feedback following the 2014 Sochi Games. Essentially, this made Mammoth the first and last stop on the road to Pyeongchang for U.S. Freeski and Snowboard athletes. 

These key moments only brush the surface of the rich history and culture surrounding Mammoth Mountain and the U.S. Grand Prix. Mammoth Mountain and U.S. Ski & Snowboard invite you to join us Jan. 29 - Feb. 1 for four days of snowboard and freeski slopestyle and halfpipe competition. If you can make it to Mammoth, be sure to tune in on NBC to catch all the action.

EVENT SCHEDULE

FREESKI
Wednesday, Jan. 29 - Slopestyle Qualifiers
Thursday, Jan. 30 - Halfpipe Qualifiers 
Friday,  Jan. 31 - Slopestyle Finals
Saturday, Feb. 1 - Halfpipe Finals

SNOWBOARD
Wednesday, Jan. 29 - Halfpipe Qualifiers
Thursday, Jan. 30 - Slopestyle Qualifiers 
Friday,  Jan. 31 - Halfpipe Finals
Saturday, Feb. 1 - Slopestyle Finals


HOW TO WATCH
Subject to change
All times EST
*Same-day delayed broadcast
** Next-day broadcast

FREESKI
Friday, Jan. 31

12:30 p.m. - Men and women’s slopestyle, Land Rover U.S. Grand Prix, Mammoth, Calif. - NBCSN, NBCSports.com, NBC Sports Gold.

Saturday, Feb. 1
6:35 a.m. - Men and women’s skicross, Megeve, FRA - Olympic Channel.com, NBC Sports Gold
4:00 p.m. - Men and women’s halfpipe, Land Rover U.S. Grand Prix, Mammoth, Calif. - Olympic Channel.com, NBC Sports Gold

Sunday, Feb. 2
3:00 p.m. - Men and women’s halfpipe, Land Rover U.S. Grand Prix, Mammoth, Calif. - NBC**

SNOWBOARD
Friday, Jan. 31

4:00 p.m. - Men and women’s halfpipe, Land Rover U.S. Grand Prix, Mammoth, Calif. - NBCSN, NBCSports.com, NBC Sports Gold

Saturday, Feb. 1
1:00 p.m. - Men and women’s slopestyle, Land Rover U.S. Grand Prix, Mammoth, Calif. - NBCSN, NBCSports.com, NBC Sports Gold
5:00 p.m. - Men and women’s halfpipe, Land Rover U.S. Grand Prix, Mammoth, Calif. - NBC**
11:30 p.m. - Men and women’s halfpipe, Land Rover U.S. Grand Prix, Mammoth, Calif. - NBCSN**

Note: All televised events to stream across NBCSports.com, NBC Sports app, OlympicChannel.com, and Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA app, Exclusive commercial-free coverage will be available for subscribers of the NBC Sports Gold Pass, available here: https://www.nbcsports.com/gold/snow.

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