US names 20 Olympic alpine skiers for Sochi 2014
PARK CITY, Utah — The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association nominated 20 athletes to the U.S. Olympic Alpine Ski Team on Sunday (Jan. 26) who will compete in Sochi next month. The team is highlighted by Olympic gold medalists Bode Miller, Ted Ligety, and Julia Mancuso as well as World Champion Mikaela Shiffrin who is set to make her Olympic debut. The United States Olympic Committee will formally name the 2014 U.S. Olympic Team on Monday, Jan. 27.
2014 Olympic Alpine Team Nominations
David Chodounsky, Crested Butte, CO (6/25/84)
Erik Fisher, Middleton, ID (3/21/85) *
Travis Ganong, Squaw Valley, CA (7/14/88)
Jared Goldberg, Holladay, UT (6/15/91)
Tim Jitloff, Reno, NV (1/11/85) *
Nolan Kasper, Warren, VT (3/27/89) *
Ted Ligety, Park City, UT (8/31/84) *
Bode Miller, Franconia, NH (10/12/77) *
Steven Nyman, Sundance, UT (2/12/82) *
Marco Sullivan, Squaw Valley, CA (4/27/80) *
Andrew Weibrecht, Lake Placid, NY (2/10/86) *
Stacey Cook, Mammoth Mountain, CA (7/3/84) *
Julia Ford, Holderness, NH (3/30/90)
Julia Mancuso, Squaw Valley, CA (3/9/84) *
Megan McJames, Park City, UT (9/24/87) *
Laurenne Ross, Bend, OR (8/17/88)
Mikaela Shiffrin, Eagle-Vail, CO (3/13/95)
Leanne Smith, North Conway, NH (5/28/87) *
Resi Stiegler, Jackson Hole, WY (11/14/85) *
Jacqueline Wiles, Aurora, OR (7/13/92)
* Competed in past Olympic Winter Games
The team was selected from results on the Audi FIS Alpine World Cup tour over the Olympic qualification period, which ended Jan. 26.
“We’re on a really good track right now. All the programs, both the tech and speed athletes, are showing really good improvements and progressions. I’m very pleased with where we are right now going into the Games,” said U.S. Ski Team alpine director Patrick Riml. “It was maybe a little bit of a rough start in some of the areas. But you can see in women’s speed, they are picking it up. Julia and Stacey are doing a good job – same with some of the younger girls and on the men’s side. You can see it with the performance we have right now from the veterans but also the younger athletes. I’m very pleased with them, and I feel really comfortable with this team going into the Games.”
On the men’s side, Miller is five-time Olympic medalist, including winning gold, silver and bronze in 2010. Sochi will be his fifth Olympic Winter Games. Ligety, 2006 Olympic combined champion, won a historic three gold medals at the 2013 World Championships to become the first male athlete to do so since 1968.
“As a group we’re building moment right now, which is really nice to see,” said head men’s coach Sasha Rearick. “The guys have been working hard all summer, all fall and all winter, day in and day out and that’s starting to show. The guys have shown 100 percent effort every day. You look at the guys who have been putting in the most effort, those are the guys we’re going to be taking to the Games and the ones that we can count on to represent America well.”
For the women, Mancuso is a double Olympic silver medalist, earning both in 2010, and the 2006 gold medalist for giant slalom. Shiffrin, 18, won the 2013 World Championship title for slalom and also captured the season-long World Cup slalom title last winter.
“I’m proud of the progress this team has made the closer we get to Sochi. We still have a lot of work to do, but the potential for success is certainly there,” remarked women’s head coach Alex Hoedlmoser. “On the tech side with Mikaela, we have some huge potential, both in the slalom and giant slalom. On the speed side, we saw that Julia and Stacey definitely are on the right track, on a huge upswing. Sochi is a total different thing and the chances are there for champion performances.”
Medal competition at the Rosa Khutor alpine venue begins on Feb. 9 with men’s downhill followed by women’s super combined on Feb. 10.
Release courtesy of USSA