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Weather Woes Continue On World Cup Circuit

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
December, 15 2017
Travis Ganong 12-15-17
Travis Ganong was the top American in 17th at the FIS Ski World Cup super-G in Val Gardena, Italy Friday. (Getty Images/Agence Zoom - Francis Bompard)

VAL GARDENA, Italy (Dec. 15, 2017) – Weather continues to wreak havoc on both the men and women’s FIS Ski World Cup European circuit. On Friday, the men’s super-G in Val Gardena, Italy, was cut off due to snow and fog after 38 racers took to the start, leaving 42 racers no opportunity to tackle the Saslong course.

Germany’s Josef Ferstl officially took the victory after FIS officials cut off the remaining portion of the race due to fog and light snow. Austria’s Max Franz was second, followed by countryman Matthias Meyer in third. Ferstl started second before light snow began to fall, and with a clear track, was able to grab his first World Cup victory.

As the race progressed, snow continued to fall and course conditions changed dramatically, with grippy snow accumulating on the track hardened by a couple days of rain earlier in the week.

“With this snowfall, the snow is really slow and sticky compared to yesterday,” said Travis Ganong (Squaw Valley, Calif.), the top American finisher in 17th. Ganong ran 18th as snow fell and fog rolled in on the middle section of the course.  “Hopefully it will be better tomorrow,” he added.

Tommy Biesemeyer finished 18th and Andrew Weibrecht (Lake Placid, N.Y.) was 28th.  Wiley Maple (Aspen, Colo.), who finished second in Wednesday’s downhill training run; Bryce Bennett (Squaw Valley, Calif.), Ryan Cochran-Siegle (Starksboro, Vt.) and Jared Goldberg (Holladay, Utah) were among the 42 athletes that did not start after the race was cancelled due to weather conditions.

Up next, the men are scheduled to race downhill on the Saslong track Saturday. Steven Nyman (Sundance, Utah) is expected to make his return to the World Cup circuit on the track where he has claimed all three of his World Cup downhill victories.

Ganong, who admits he’s off to a slow start this season, finishing 35th in Wednesday’s downhill training, and not finishing Thursday training run, hopes to continue to build confidence with two months remaining before the 2018 Olympic Winter Olympics in Saturday’s downhill.

“It was kind of a rough start to the season, so I’m just trying to build some confidence from race to race and find the speed and find the race gear,” Ganong said. “When it’s going well, it’s super easy. When it's not going well it’s really hard and you’re questioning everything.

“Ski racing is such a simple sport, but the margins are so small, a half a second separates you from a really good day to a really bad day,” he continued. “I’m taking it day-by-day and hopefully I’ll be building into the Olympics - that’s the goal.”

Weather Scrubs Women’s Val d’Isere Downhill

For the second-straight day, snow and wind have combined to cancel downhill training on the women’s FIS Ski World Cup circuit in Val d'Isere, France. FIS Officials have canceled Saturday’s scheduled downhill and replaced it with super-G, which is re-scheduled from last week’s canceled race in St. Moritz. The women will also race super-G Sunday in Val d’Isere.

RESULTS
Men’s super-G

HOW TO WATCH
All times EST
Saturday, December 16
4:30 a.m. – Women’s super-G; Val d’Isere – Olympic Channel TV
6:00 a.m. – Men’s downhill; Val Gardena – Olympic Channel TV
5:00 p.m. – Women’s super-G; Val d’Isere – NBCSN (same day delay)
6:00 p.m. – Men’s downhill; Val Gardena – NBCSN (same day delay)

Sunday, December 17
3:30 a.m. – Men’s giant slalom run 1; Alta Badia – olympicchannel.com
3:30 a.m. – Women’s super-G; Val d’Isere – Olympic Channel TV
6:00 a.m. – Men’s giant slalom run 2; Alta Badia – Olympic Channel TV
3:30 a.m. – Women’s super-G; Val d’Isere – NBCSN (same day delay)

 

Searching for Speed in Val d’Isere and Val Gardena

By Megan Harrod
December, 14 2017
Lindsey Vonn cow

The FIS Alpine Ski World Cup “White Circus” speeds on to the second leg of its tour this weekend in Val d’Isere, France for the women and Val Gardena, Italy for the men. Though weather has presented a challenge on both sides, let’s hope things calm a bit for the weekend so the athletes can show what they’ve been working on all prep period. Now’s the time. We’re on the #RoadToPyeongChang after all.

Lindsey Vonn (Vail, Colo.) arrived in Val d’Isere feeling and looking like an entirely new woman after suffering from a back injury during the super-G at St. Moritz, Switzerland last weekend. In an interview with NBCSN, she said, “I know my skiing is solid and I'm looking forward to putting it all together on race day.” She’s not thinking about the pain, but rather noted she just needs to keep her back loose and prepare for race day. Along with Vonn, Laurenne Ross (Bend, Ore.) looks to progress in her return from a knee injury at the end of last season and find the confidence to “send it” this weekend in Val d’Isere. She’ll be doing it in front of her father, who came to watch her race. Vonn’s father, Alan Kildow, also came to cheer on his daughter.

The women’s speed squad is deep and on any given day, any of these women are podium potential athletes. Watch them do something special this weekendthat is, if the weather gods are watching over them. Cross your fingers and hope these athletes can win a Val d'Isere cow and some local Beaufort cheese.

From volleyball to dance shenanigans, and shopping to the annual White Elephant gift exchange—a tradition started long ago by head coach and resident Santa Claus Chip White—​​​​​​​the week has been full of holiday cheer and good vibes. And on Thursday, Vonn took time to wish one of her biggest fans, named Hedda, a very happy birthday. Hedda has been battling cancer for the past few years and is one of the biggest fighters the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Team has ever encountered. We hope you join us in wishing Hedda a happy 15th birthday. 

Over in Italy, the men are enjoying the most white and wintry Saslong classic downhill in years. It’s a vision of angelic epic proportions in the Dolomites at the moments. And even that seems to be an understatement. With the Saslong towering over the track, it offers some of the most surreal views on tour…and the American Downhillers simply love it.

​​​​​​Earlier in the week, the American Downhillers attended a cooking class at the team hotel on their day off, learning the secrets to their lasagna. It must have helped, seeing as though the first training run saw Jared Goldberg (Holladay, Utah) setting the pace, followed by Wiley Maple (Aspen, Colo.) in second and Bryce Bennett (Squaw Valley, Calif.) in ninth. The second training run wasn’t much different, with Maple in 10th and Bennett in 13th. They’re feeling good and ready to rock.

Much of that confidence comes from the man at the helm, John “Johno” McBride, who also hails from Aspen and was a longtime coach of the U.S. Ski Team in the Bode Miller and Daron Rahlves era. No doubt his renegade style has made a difference with the team this season. Is he surprised about the downhill training results? Nope.

“I think we’re good,” he said on Thursday. “It was kind of a funky day today. But I think everyone is in a good place. Conditions on the track are good—fog was in and out today, which made for a long day of training. But overall, the track is good.” The boys are ready. And the American Downhillers will be led by veteran and three-time Olympian Steven Nyman (Sundance, Utah). For the first time since he blew his knee last January, he’ll be racing. He’s been missed, and no doubt his leadership will lift the rest of the crew. He has that special kind of effect. It also helps that Nyman has snagged his three World Cup victories on the Saslong, earning him the much-deserved title of “King of the Saslong.” Welcome back, Steven. #BelieveInSteven, right?!

From there, Ted Ligety (Park City, Utah) will lead the tech men into battle at Alta Badia, where Ligety has won twice and Tommy Ford (Bend, Ore.) and Tim Jitloff (Reno, Nev.) have also grabbed some of their best results. 

Steve Schlanger and U.S. Ski Team alumni Steve Porino and Doug Lewis will call the action in the coming days. See who to watch and where to catch all the action below.

WOMEN’S STARTERS

Val d’Isere (downhill and super-G)
Stacey Cook
Julia Mancuso
Alice McKennis
Alice Merryweather
Breezy Johnson
Laurenne Ross
Lindsey Vonn
Jackie Wiles


MEN’S STARTERS

Val Gardena (downhill and super-G)
Bryce Bennett
Tommy Biesemeyer
Ryan Cochran-Siegle
Travis Ganong
Jared Goldberg
Wiley Maple
Steven Nyman
Andrew Weibrecht

Alta Badia (giant slalom)
David Chodounsky
Ryan Cochran-Siegle
Tommy Ford
Tim Jitloff
Ted Ligety
Hig Roberts


HOW TO WATCH (times ET)

Friday, December 15
6:00 a.m. – Men’s super-G; Val Gardena – Olympic Channel TV

Saturday, December 16
4:30 a.m. – Women’s downhill; Val d’Isere – Olympic Channel TV
6:00 a.m. – Men’s downhill; Val Gardena – Olympic Channel TV
5:00 p.m. – Women’s downhill; Val d’Isere – NBCSN (same day delay)
6:00 p.m. – Men’s downhill; Val Gardena – NBCSN (same day delay)

Sunday, December 17
3:30 a.m. – Men’s giant slalom run 1; Alta Badia – olympicchannel.com
3:30 a.m. – Women’s super-G; Val d’Isere – Olympic Channel TV
6:00 a.m. – Men’s giant slalom run 2; Alta Badia – Olympic Channel TV
3:30 a.m. – Women’s super-G; Val d’Isere – NBCSN (same day delay)

RESULTS
Men’s Downhill Training 1
Men’s Downhill Training 2

START LISTS
Men’s Super-G

 

Learning Management System Launched for Coaches

By Tom Kelly
December, 14 2017
Learning Management System


Education is a cornerstone of athletic success. To help further the education of athletic coaches, U.S. Ski & Snowboard has launched a new online Learning Management System (LMS). The new platform will create a channel to deliver education when and where members choose.

The new learning system is debuting this year with an online component of U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s Level 100 Coach Certification program across all sports. Additional programming for coach education, officials training, club development, athlete education and parent engagement are in the works, as is internal training for staff.

“The introduction of an online learning system will greatly enhance our ability to provide consistent education on more topics to more U.S. Ski & Snowboard members,” said Sport Development Director Jon Casson. 

The LMS is available through the organization’s new website at education.ussa.org. The system is run using the popular Moodle platform, a widely used LMS with a base of 95,000 individual sites and 125 million users. The system is open to any U.S. Ski & Snowboard member alpine coach seeking to complete their Level 100 certification. Other sports will be coming online later this season.

U.S. Ski & Snowboard is also supporting the efforts of its partner organization United States of America Snowboard and Freeski Association (USASA) at education.usasa.org.

The system is being managed by U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s new Coach Education Manager Chris Packert. A lifelong skier and ski instructor, Packert brings a wealth of education background to the organization. Prior to joining the U.S. Ski & Snowboard team, Packert managed online learning programs for NASA, U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security, the U.S. Marine Corps, American Public University and the Western Governors University.

“I’ve gained a wealth of knowledge working in online education programs for some of America’s most noted governmental agencies,” said Packert. “I’m anxious to bring that experience into the sport that I truly love.”

The new Alpine Ski Level 100 Coach Certification program available now is a blended learning program incorporating several courses that participants complete prior to attending an on-snow clinic with a trained clinic leader.  After passing an on-snow assessment of skill demonstration, coaching ability and movement analysis, the participants return to the online platform to complete a final exam. Throughout the process, participants also complete a portfolio where they describe in detail how they will utilize their learning in their daily coaching practice.

The online modules are designed to give coaches a solid foundation in the fundamentals of effective coaching and a base of understanding in the specific components of the sport.  Based on the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Training Systems, the online modules in the L100 course are divided into two sections: Coaching Core Competencies and Sport Specific Topics.

Coaching Cord Competencies
•    Coaching Roles and Responsibilities
•    Coach Ethics and Philosophy
•    Coach Pedagogy
•    Long Term Athlete Development
•    Training Environments
•    Athlete Mental Skill Development (under development)
•    Physical Literacy and Physical Fitness (under development)

Sport Specific Modules
•    Fundamental Technical Skills
•    Tactical Applications
•    Equipment Selection and Preparation
•    Competition Rules and Pathways

Following the launch of the Alpine Ski L100 program in November, sport-specific online learning modules will come online soon including snowboarding, freeski, cross country and nordic combined. Cost for the Alpine Level 100 program is $160.00.
 

Remembering Longtime Official Bruce Crane

By Tom Kelly
December, 14 2017
Bruce Crane

Noted national and international ski racing official Bruce Crane passed away peacefully December 9 at his home in Park City. A devoted husband and father, he served his passion as a sport leader for nearly a half century with U.S. Ski & Snowboard and the International Ski Federation (FIS).

Crane passed after a long battle with cancer, his loving wife of 38 years, Anita, and other family members at his side at their Old Town home in Park City, Utah.

"Bruce embodied the great passion that is emblematic of our sport professionals and volunteers," said U.S. Ski & Snowboard President and CEO Tiger Shaw. "His contributions as a staff leader, volunteer and technical delegate were exemplary. His work will live on and continue to benefit the sport for years to come."

The son of Emily Townsend and Henry D. Crane, Jr., he was born Nov. 18, 1947 in Cambridge, Mass. His parents, both doctors, moved the family to Plymouth, N.H. where Bruce grew up with a passion for skiing. His mother Emily played a key role in the sport as a longtime race secretary and administrator. He graduated cum laude from Holderness School in Plymouth, N.H. before earning his bachelor's degree from Williams College in Williamstown, Mass.

He served as an educator and a coach at Tilton School in New Hampshire after college, where he began his work as both a coach and competition official in alpine ski racing. He was certified as a national ski competition official by the then U.S. Ski Association in 1972. In 1976 he achieved his FIS Technical Delegate license - the highest level of competition officiating. Two years later he was recognized with the Burckett-Dodge Award for his service to officiation in New England. He also served for many years as head of the New Hampshire Alpine Racing Association.

Early in his career he also worked as a race manager and coach at Waterville Valley, Great Gorge Resort, Pat's Peak and Squaw Valley.

Crane went on to serve as national alpine competition director for the U.S. Ski Association for 16 years in both Colorado Springs and Park City where he played a key role in establishing and maintaining management protocols for the sport, including race scoring and athlete ranking systems.

He put his vast sport skills to work serving in a high-level capacity at two Olympic Winter Games. Leading up to the 1988 Olympics in Calgary, he served as a consultant to the Canadian Ski Association as well as head referee for alpine skiing at the Games. During the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City he served as assistant manager for ski jumping and nordic combined. 

During his tenure in the sport he served on many national and international committees including service as chair of U.S. alpine courses and rules committees. He also served as secretary of the FIS Alpine NorAm Subcommittee from 1982 to 1997 before being named as an honorary member.

He was honored many times for his service including the Westhaven Award for service as a technical delegate in 1997 as well as the Bud and Mary Little Award for his work with FIS and the U.S. Olympic Committee in 2002.

Colleagues in the ski world will remember him for his great attention to detail and organizational skills that allowed him to play such a key role in the sport during its rapid growth period from the 1970s through 1990s. He was world acclaimed for his work in race timing and scoring, athlete ranking systems and race course homologation. Much of the infrastructure he pioneered during that time is still in place today.

While maintaining his role in alpine ski racing, he also worked in various management roles in Park City for the Park City Mountain Resort, Mountainlands Housing Trust and Destination VIP.

He is survived by his wife of 38 years, Anita Crane, along with his son Jeremy Crane and grandchildren Sydney, 12, and Marley, 9 of Boston, Mass., four stepchildren, Ellen Marie Ramsey of Pinedale, Wyo., Donald Dean McPherson of Roseville, Calif., Ronald Lee McPherson of Pontotoc, Miss., and Robert Donald McPherson of Roseville, Calif. and his five sisters Suzanne Gilman of Bridgewater, N.H., Charlotte Crane of Chicago, Ill., Cynthia Fisher of Bridgewater, N.H., Dr. Margaret Mumford of Plymouth, N.H., and Dr. Joan Barthold of Lyme, N.H. 

A memorial service is being planned in Park City after New Year, with a celebration of life next summer in New Hampshire.

The Park City memorial service will be held Saturday, January 13 beginning at 10:00 a.m. at St. Mary's of the Assumption church located on state route 224 at White Pine Canyon Road. A social gathering with refreshments will be held after the service.

Aerialists Ready to Fly in China

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
December, 14 2017
caldwellaerials

SECRET GARDEN, China (Dec. 14, 2017) – The U.S. Ski Team aerials athletes will compete at a new site this week when the FIS Freestyle aerials World Cup tour opens at Secret Garden Resort. Athletes will compete in an individual event on Dec. 16 followed by a team event on Dec. 17. Results from Saturday’s World Cup and the individual qualification results from Sunday’s team event will be taken into consideration when nominating the team for the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018.

After two productive on snow camps this fall, the U.S. team is ready to kick off the Olympic season with some top results. Nine athletes are expected to compete, including reigning World Champions Ashley Caldwell (Ashburn, Va.) and Jon Lillis (Rochester, N.Y.) as well as 2015 World Cup champions Mac Bohonnon (Madison, Conn.) and Kiley McKinnon (Madison, Conn.). McKinnon achieved one of two top-3 finishes required to meet minimum objective criteria with a second place finish in last season’s selection event at Deer Valley Resort, Utah. Secret Garden, which is also the site for the 2022 Games, will include two of six selection events taking place in 2017-18.

Read on to see who to watch and where to watch all the action from Secret Garden.

MEN’S STARTERS
Mac Bohonnon
Alex Bowen
Chris Lillis
Jon Lillis
Eric Loughran

WOMEN’S STARTERS
Ashley Caldwell
Kiley McKinnon
Morgan Northrop
Madison Olsen

HOW TO WATCH (times EST)
Dec. 16
12:30 a.m. – Men’s and women’s aerials – Olympic Channel TV

Dec. 17
12:30 a.m. – Men’s and women’s team aerials – Olympic Channel TV

All Eyes on Ashley Caldwell as World Cup Kicks Off

By Caitlin Furin
December, 13 2017
caldwell

When the FIS Freestyle aerials World Cup kicks off this weekend in Secret Garden, China, all eyes will be on reigning World Cup champion Ashley Caldwell (Ashburn, Va.) as she begins the journey to make her third Olympic team. U.S. Ski & Snowboard caught up with Ashley before she left for China to talk about the two training camps she participated in this fall and how she’s feeling heading into this Olympic season.

With pre-season on-snow camps, what is your strategy as far as progression goes? Is the goal to be landing your biggest tricks before the first World Cups?

The pre-season camps we did in Saas-Fee, Switzerland, and Ruka, Finland were incredible for this season's preparation period. Usually, before the first World Cup of the season, our team rushes through tricks in order to get up to the degree of difficulty tricks that we need to compete. Not only is this dangerous and scary, but it’s also unproductive. As an aerialist, it is important to nail the basic tricks before moving on to harder jumps. My strategy during these camps was to nail some of my basic tricks and feel confident when I get to my highest degree of difficulty. My goal isn't to peak at the first World Cups. I'd like to be doing some of my easier triples. Then, when I start to feel good, I will begin doing my biggest tricks, probably heading into the Deer Valley and Lake Placid World Cups in January in front of the home fans.
 


What were some cool aspects of the camps in Saas Fee and Ruka? What made you enjoy each one?

Both locations were beautiful. We got to experience both locations but also made sure that we focused on our jumping and our physical fitness during these camps. I loved the town of Saas-Fee, just walking around and hiking was incredible. The jumping site in Saas-Fee was smaller than most World Cup sites, which made it perfect for our first singles and doubles of the season. Ruka was like living in a snow globe made for World Cup skiers. The training was superb and the environment was focused. Also, both places had really great food...especially cookies!


How hard is it mentally preparing to jump in a new location?

It can be a little nerve-racking showing up to a site that you have never been to before. Every hill in the world has a little different profile. The angles and dimensions of each site fall within a scope but can vary enough to make your eyes wide at first glance. Luckily for us, we can start with easier tricks to get used to a new site.


You posted a video of a pretty epic crash from Ruka. Walk us through what happened in that jump and how you prepared yourself to get back up and do it again.

Despite popular belief, it’s almost impossible to land backward on an aerials site due to the degree of the slope of the landing. In Ruka, on my first days of triples, I messed up one of my tricks and landed - safely - backward. I didn't ski away, but that would have been cool.

What had happened in the trick is that I got a little confused and almost went for a bigger trick, a lay-full-full. I quickly realized my mistake and then got a little out of place in the air. I have a lot of trampoline background so I felt pretty comfortable looking at the ground and putting my feet down even though it was the wrong direction.

Our sport is scary and dangerous, so when you mess up a trick that bad it can be mentally challenging. My mental strategy to handle fear looks the same most time: acknowledge the fear, make fun of the fear, realize you've been successful after crashes and fear before, then go have fun and enjoy overcoming another one of sport's challenges.

With two on-snow camps under your belt (way more than last year ha), how are you feeling heading into China?

Despite a crazy landing in Ruka, I feel pretty good heading into China. I haven't done all the tricks that I need to do, but I have logged more snow time than any other year heading into these first World Cups. I have a lot of work to get done this year, but our whole team is off to an incredible start.

Jacobellis Wins in Val Thorens

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
December, 13 2017

VAL THORENS, France (Dec. 13, 2017) – Five-time snowboardcross World Champion Lindsey Jacobellis (Stratton, Vt.) rode to her second victory of the 2017-18 season in Val Thorens, putting her in good form to make the Olympic team for PyeongChang 2018. Faye Gulini (Salt Lake City, Utah) finished just off the podium in fourth. 

After battling difficult weather conditions during qualifications, the women had good conditions for Wednesday's finals. Jacobellis was ranked first coming into the final race and maintained a solid lead to claim victory over France's Chloe Trespeuch in second and Italy's Michela Moioli in third. Gulini was in podium contention until she caught an edge near the end of the course.

“I'm really happy that the course was working well today,” said Jacobellis. "Normally everyone loves snow being a winter sport athlete but actually it was very challenging here as it makes the course so slow. The past days it was hard for the women as we couldn't clear the landings but today was good.”

“I was just trying to get in where I could, and I knew some of the style of the ladies, so I tried to anticipate that and try to set up for the hard turns like turn five. I wanted to get at least enough space between me and them, and it all went down.”

On the men's side, Mick Dierdorff (Steamboat Springs, Colo.) and Nick Baumgartner (Iron River, Mich.) were the lone U.S. athletes to advance to quarterfinals, finishing ninth and 14th respectively. Germany's Paul Berg took the win, followed by Australia's Adam Lambert in second and Spain's Lucas Eguibar in third. 

The FIS Snowboard snowboardcross World Cup continues this week with individual and team events in Montafon, Austria Dec. 16-17.

RESULTS
Women's Snowboardcross
Men's Snowboarcross

Road to PyeongChang Continues This Weekend

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
December, 12 2017
Road to PyeongChang Continues This Weekend

U.S. Ski & Snowboard Team athletes landed 10 podiums at the first Toyota U.S. Grand Prix Olympic qualification events of the season last weekend in Copper Mountain, Colorado, including wins from halfpipe masters David Wise (Reno, Nev.) and Chloe Kim (Torrance, Calif.).

The women’s U.S. Cross Country Ski Team continued to show depth with impressive results in Davos, Switzerland, including a podium from World Champion Kikkan Randall. The moguls team kicked off their season advancing five women into finals, with World Championship bronze medalist Jaelin Kauf notching a fifth-place finish.

With just under two months to go until the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang, read on to see where the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Team will be in action this week and how to watch via NBC, NBCSN and the Olympic Channel - Home of Team USA - as America’s best skiers and snowboarders continue to vie for spots on their respective Olympic teams.

FIS Women’s Ski World Cup - Val d’Isere, FRA / Courchevel, FRA
The U.S. Ski Team women’s speed team continues the European leg of the FIS Ski World Cup this weekend in Val d’Isere Dec. 16-17 with downhill and super-G races. The deeply talented women’s speed team will be out in full force, including Stacey Cook (Mammoth Lakes, Calif.), Julia Mancuso (Squaw Valley, Calif.), Laurenne Ross (Bend, Ore.) and more. Though Lindsey Vonn (Vail, Colo.) has arrived to Val d’Isere, she has yet to make a decision about whether or not she’ll kick out of the start gate this weekend, due to spinal joint dysfunction sustained in Saturday’s super-G. Stay tuned. Then, on Monday the tech women head to Courchevel for a giant slalom and a parallel slalom under the lights, led by current overall leader Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, Colo.) and Resi Stiegler (Jackson, Wyo.).

FIS Men’s Ski World Cup - Val Gardena, ITA / Alta Badia, ITA
The men’s speed and tech teams are in action this weekend with downhill and super-G races in Val Gardena Dec. 15-16 and a giant slalom and nighttime parallel giant slalom in Alta Badia Dec. 17-18. U.S. Ski Team athletes expected to compete in Italy include Ted Ligety (Park City, Utah), Travis Ganong (Squaw Valley, Calif.), Andrew Weibrecht (Lake Placid, N.Y.), Tommy Ford (Bend, Ore.), and more. Steven Nyman (Sundance, Utah) has yet to decide if he’ll kick out of the start gate on the famed Saslong classic downhill—a track he knows and loves, and where he’s won all three of his FIS Ski World Cup victories.

FIS Freestyle World Cup - Secret Garden, CHN
The U.S. Ski Team aerials athletes kick off their World Cup season with an individual and team event Dec. 16-17 at Secret Garden resort, a site for the 2022 Olympic Winter Games. Nine U.S. athletes are expected to compete, including reigning World Champions Ashley Caldwell (Ashburn, Va.) and Jon Lillis (Rochester, N.Y.) as well as 2015 World Cup champions Kiley McKinnon (Madison, Conn.) and Mac Bohonnon (Madison, Conn.).

FIS Freestyle World Cup - Montafon, AUT
After wrapping up a race in Arosa, Switzerland on Dec. 12, U.S. athletes Tania Prymak (Goshen, N.Y.), Tyler Wallasch (Mammoth Lakes, Calif.), Whitney and Brant Crossan (Steamboat Springs, Colo.) move on to their third World Cup of the season in Montafon.

FIS Cross Country World Cup - Toblach, ITA
The men’s and women’s cross country World Cup tour continues Dec. 16-17 with freestyle and classic pursuit races. The U.S. Ski Team is coming off another solid weekend with three women making the freestyle sprint finals in Davos, including a podium from Kikkan Randall (Anchorage, Alaska) and Simi Hamilton (Aspen, Colo.) posting his first top-10 finish of the season.

FIS Women’s Ski Jumping World Cup - Hinterzarten, GER
After a week off, Abby Ringquist, Sarah Hendrickson (Park City, Utah), Nina Lussi, Nita Englund and Tara Geraghty-Moats will compete Dec. 16-17 in one team and one individual event. The American women will return to the U.S. this month for U.S. Olympic Trials Dec. 30-31.

FIS Men’s Ski Jumping World Cup - Engelberg, SUI
Will Rhoads (Park City, Utah), Mike Glasder (Cary, Ill.) and Kevin Bickner (Wauconda, Ill.) will compete in two individual HS140 events. Qualifications are on Dec. 15 with finals Dec. 16-17.

FIS Nordic Combined World Cup - Ramsau, AUT
Bryan and Taylor Fletcher (Steamboat Springs, Colo.) and Adam Loomis (Eau Claire, Wis.) return to World Cup action Dec. 16-17 with two individual World Cup events. The USA Nordic nordic combined team will also compete at U.S. Olympic Trials this month.

FIS Snowboard World Cup - Val Thorens, FRA / Montafon, AUT
After kicking off the World Cup tour in Argentina back in September, U.S. Snowboard Team snowboardcross athletes are back in action with races in France on Dec. 13  and Austria Dec. 16-17, including a team event on Sunday. The U.S. has a strong contingent of 19 athletes competing, including Olympic bronze medalist Alex Deibold (Boulder, Colo.), World Champion Lindsey Jacobellis (Stratton, Vt.) and Jonathan Cheever (Saugus, Mass), who landed a podium at the first Olympic selection event in Argentina. The U.S. advanced seven men to the finals for the Val Thorens event.

Dew Tour - Breckenridge, Colo.
After a week of strong performances at the Toyota U.S. Grand Prix, U.S. Freeski and Snowboard Team athletes move over to Breckenridge for the Dew Tour, which is also serving as the second Olympic qualification event of the season. Halfpipe and slopestyle athletes will compete in finals Dec. 15-16. A full schedule is available here.

U.S. SKI & SNOWBOARD BROADCAST AND STREAMING SCHEDULE
All times EST
*schedules subject to change

ALPINE
Dec. 15
6:00 a.m. – Men’s super-G; Val Gardena – Olympic Channel TV

Dec. 16
4:30 a.m.  – Women’s downhill; Val d’Isere – Olympic Channel TV
6:00 a.m. – Men’s downhill; Val Gardena – Olympic Channel TV
5:00 p.m.  – Women’s downhill; Val d’Isere – NBCSN (SDD)
6:00 p.m. – Men’s downhill; Val Gardena – NBCSN (SDD)

Dec. 17
3:30 a.m. – Men’s giant slalom run 1; Alta Badia – olympicchannel.com
3:30 a.m. – Women’s super-G; Val d’Isere – Olympic Channel TV
6:00 a.m. – Men’s giant slalom run 2; Alta Badia – Olympic Channel TV
3:30 a.m. – Women’s super-G; Val d’Isere – NBCSN (SDD)

FREESTYLE
Dec. 15
4:30 a.m. – Men’s and women’s skicross – Olympic Channel TV

Dec. 16
12:30 a.m. – Men’s and women’s aerials – Olympic Channel TV

Dec. 17
12:30 a.m. – Men’s and women’s team aerials – Olympic Channel TV

CROSS COUNTRY
Dec. 16
5:00 a.m. – Women’s 10k freestyle – olympicchannel.com
7:30 a.m. – Men’s 15k freestyle – olympicchannel.com
1:00 p.m. – Women’s 10k freestyle – Olympic Channel TV (same day delay)

Dec. 17
5:30 a.m. – Women’s 10k classic pursuit – olympicchannel.com
7:45 a.m. – Men’s 15k classic pursuit – olympicchannel.com
1:00 p.m. – Women’s 10k classic pursuit – Olympic Channel TV (same day delay)

SKI JUMPING
Dec. 15
10:00 a.m. – Men’s HS142 qualifications; Engelberg – olympicchannel.com

Dec. 16
6:30 a.m. – Women’s Team HS108; Hinterzarten – olympicchannel.com
10:00 a.m. – Men’s Team HS140; Engelberg – olympicchannel.com
5:30 p.m. – Women’s Team HS108; Hinterzarten – Olympic Channel TV (same day delay)
7:00 p.m. – Men’s HS140; Engelberg – Olympic Channel TV (same day delay)

Dec. 17
8:00 a.m. – Men’s HS140; Engelberg – olympicchannel.com
9:30 a.m. – Women’s HS108; Hinterzarten – olympicchannel.com
5:30 p.m. – Men’s HS140; Engelberg – Olympic Channel TV (same day delay)
7:00 p.m. – Women’s HS108; Hinterzarten – Olympic Channel TV (same day delay)

NORDIC COMBINED
Dec. 16
5:00 a.m. – Men’s HS96 – olympicchannel.com
7:30 a.m. – Men’s 10k – olympicchannel.com

Dec. 17
5:30 a.m. – Men’s HS96 – olympicchannel.com
7:45 a.m. – Men’s 10k – olympicchannel.com

SNOWBOARD
Dec. 13
6:30 a.m. – Snowboardcross; Val Thorens – Olympic Channel TV

Dec. 16
6:30 a.m. – Snowboardcross; Montafon – olympicchannel.com
2:00 p.m. – Snowboardcross; Montafon – Olympic Channel TV (same day delay)

Dec. 17
5:30 a.m. – Snowboardcross team event; Montafon – olympicchannel.com
2:00 p.m. – Snowboardcross team event; Montafon – Olympic Channel TV (same day delay)

DEW TOUR
Click here for streaming channel listing
Dec. 15
11:00 a.m. – Men’s halfpipe skiing finals
12:45 p.m. – Women’s halfpipe skiing finals
2:30 p.m. – Men’s halfpipe snowboarding finals
4:15 p.m. – Women’s halfpipe snowboarding finals

Dec. 16
11:00 a.m. – Women’s slopestyle snowboarding finals
12:15 p.m. – Men’s slopestyle snowboarding finals
2:30 p.m. – Men’s slopestyle skiing finals
4:15 p.m. – Women’s slopestyle skiing finals

U.S. Riders Take Three Podiums at Toyota U.S. Grand Prix

By U.S. Ski & Snowboard
December, 10 2017
Julia 12-10-17

COPPER MOUNTAIN, Colo. (Dec. 10, 2017) – U.S. Snowboard Team riders took three of six podium positions in Sunday’s big air at the Toyota U.S. Grand Prix Olympic qualifying event. Snowboard big air debuts at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games.

Julia Marino (Westport, Conn.) was second in the women’s competition. Japan’s Reira Iwabuchi took the victory while Norway’s Silje Norendal was third.

“I’m feeling great,” Marino said. “I mean it’s, it’s kind of – it’s really, really cool to see where this sport is going and I’m really happy with, with what I did. But I’m mostly really excited to push myself more because obviously the level of snowboarding is being stepped up by all these younger ones and even some of the older girls too, which is really cool.”

In the men’s completion, Chris Corning (Silverthorne, Colo.) was second, with Chandler Hunt (Park City, Utah) in third. Norway’s Mons Roisland took the victory.

“I’m feeling super good,” Hunt said after his third-place performance. “I’m so – was definitely not what I was expecting coming into this event, so just to put all my runs down is like a dream come true. I’m so amped.”

Sunday’s event also served as a World Cup event.  Snowboard World Cup will continue in less than 10 days with this season's third Halfpipe World Cup in Secret Garden, China December 19-21, 2017.

RESULTS
Men’s big air
Women’s big air

Women's Depth Showcased at Davos

By Tom Kelly
December, 10 2017
Sadie Bjornsen

DAVOS, Switzerland (Dec. 10, 2017) - Sadie Bjornsen (Winthrop, Wash.) matched a career-best 10k freestyle Sunday, skiing to 12th in Davos. Bjornsen led four Americans into the top 20 with five in the top 30 points. it was one of the strongest overall performances on a higher elevation distance course for the U.S. Ski Team.

Norway’s Ingvild Flugstad Oestberg took the win for the women while Maurice Manificat of France won for the men. It was the first race of seven this year not won by Johannes Høsflot Klæbo, who chose to sit out. Paddy Caldwell (Lyme, N.H.) led the U.S. men in 41st.

While the American women did not challenge for the podium, they were formidable in depth. The distance in Davos had been 15k the last two seasons for the women, dropping this year to the 10k Olympic length.

Just a day after her skate sprint podium, Kikkan Randall (Anchorage) was 14th - her best 10k skate finish since she was on the podium in Gaellivare, Sweden over five years ago. Jessie Diggins (Afton, Minn.) was 15th with Rosie Brennan (Park City, Utah) 17th for one of her best distance finishes ever. Continental Cup leader Chelsea Holmes (Anchorage) was 29th for her first World Cup points outside North America and first time on the track at Davos.

“Davos always feels like the hardest thing in the world,” said Bjornsen of the high altitude track that offers little rest. “Today my goal was to go out harder. When I pace things sometimes I have a tendency to go too slow and don’t get into the flow of the race. I new I was taking a dangerous path going out hard and try to hold it. I know I lost a little bit but I was happy at the end of the day. There’s a lot more in my skating bank this winter.”

The Davos course sits at over 5,000 feet elevation - the highest on the tour and around double that of the Olympic course in PyeongChang.

“Overall pretty decent but it’s going to leave us wanting for a little bit more,” said Head Coach Chris Grover.

Diggins is now eighth in the World Cup overall rankings with Bjornsen ninth..

The team capped the weekend Sunday afternoon with a reception to dedicate its new waxing truck, that has been responsible for faster skis and a better work environment for the team's ski technicians.

The tour now heads to Toblach, Italy for a pair of pre-Christmas events next weekend. Saturday will feature another 15k/10k freestyle race, an Olympic discipline, then wrap up Sunday with a 15k/10k classic pursuit.

RESULTS
Men's 15k freestyle 
Women's 10k freestyle