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U.S. Riders Ready for PGS, PSL World Championships

By Andrew Gauthier
February, 3 2019
Aaron Muss in Spain
U.S. Snowboard Alpine Snowboard B Team member Aaron Muss at the Sierra Nevada 2017 FIS Snowboard World Championships. (Oliver Kraus / FIS Snowboard)

Americans will face off against a strong international field this week in parallel giant slalom and parallel slalom at the 2019 FIS Snowboard, Freestyle and Freeski World Championships, presented by Toyota, at Utah’s Park City Mountain. The U.S. will be represented by four women and four men. For the men, Ryan Rosencranz (Weston, Mass.), Cody Winters (Steamboat Springs, Colo.), Robert Burns (Mount Shasta, Calif.) and 2018 PyeongChang Olympian, and U.S Alpine Snowboard B Team member AJ Muss (Rumson, N.J.) will represent the U.S.

“At 24, I'm lucky enough to come back to the U.S. to participate in my third World Championships with my first being in Stoneham, Canada, and then two years ago in Sierra Nevada, Spain,” said Muss. “Coming home to compete on my home soil means alot since I have been training in Europe for so long! I’m super stoked to come back to Park City having not ridden here since Nastar Nationals years and years ago as a child. It always means alot to represent the U.S. whether it be the highest honor of representing Alpine Snowboarding at the Olympics last year in Korea or every time I pull out of gate on the World Cup Stage. The journey is not easy, but I am truly a proud American athlete striving to wins medals for myself and my country.“

For the ladies, Abby Champagne (Park CIty, Utah), Kaiya Kizuka (Sinking Spring, Penn.), Lynn Ott (Boston, Mass.) and Alexa Bullis (Slinger, Wisc.) are set to compete.

"I am beyond excited to be racing my first World Champs in my home town of Park City in front of my family and friends," said Champagne. "I am so thankful for the opportunity to represent the U.S. while racing with the best in the world. I have been fighting some injuries this season, but my goal for these World Champs is to come out strong and ride to the best of my abilities and of course to have fun and enjoy every bit of it."

Ott also shared her thoughts on being the veteran in the group. 

"I’m definitely not the youngest out here so when people fixate on me being older, I just think that it's just a number as not to let it get in my head," said Ott. My biggest accomplishment is living the dream for so long in the sport I love and getting to snowboard and enjoy life as much as I do. Snowboarding is my place of peace from working in the city."

The qualification round will be run on parallel courses. These courses are the same as, or similar to, the parallel finals courses, in terms of the number of gates, fall line, gate distance and angle of inclination. The qualification consists of two runs: the qualification run (first run) and the elimination run (second run). All qualified competitors (those with a valid time registered) from the qualification run start in the elimination run. They start on the opposite course in reverse order of their rank. The top 16 ranked competitors according to the combined time of the two runs qualify to the finals.

In the final round, two competitors ride side-by-side down the courses. The setting of the courses, configuration of the ground and preparation of the snow are to be as nearly identical as possible (vertical drop is 120-200 metres). Parallel finals heats consist of two runs. The competitors change courses for the second run ("Red" and "Blue" course). The loser of the first run starts with a time delay, which corresponds to his/her time behind from the first run. The delay is limited to a "penalty time" of 1.5 second). Finals heats consist of a direct knockout format: the best qualified competitor can choose his lane at start, the first to cross the finish line wins the heat and moves on to the next round.

The head-to-head direct knockout format will make for exciting competitions at Park City Mountain. Tune in on NBC to catch all the action.

All times EST
*Same-day broadcast
**Next-day broadcast

Monday, Feb. 4

3:00 p.m. - FIS World Championships men and women’s parallel giant slalom - Park City Mountain Resort, Utah - Olympic Channel-TV, & NBC Sports Gold
7:30 p.m. - FIS World Championships men and women’s parallel giant slalom - Park City Mountain Resort, Utah - NBCSN*

Tuesday, Feb. 5
3:00 p.m. - FIS World Championships men and women’s parallel slalom - Park City Mountain, Utah - NBCSN & NBC Sports Gold
9:00 p.m. - FIS World Championships men and women’s big air - Park City Mountain Resort, Utah - NBCSN & NBC Sports Gold