MAMMOTH LAKES, Calif. — Fourteen halfpipe and giant slalom riders, includingseveral past and present world champions, and ranging from teenagers to women intheir 30s, were named Saturday night to the first U.S. Olympic Snowboard Team,announced following the final event in the $225,000 Bud Light U.S. SnowboardGrand Prix.
The team was introduced in a teleconference that included journalists whoalready are in Nagano, Japan for the Winter Games which run Feb. 7-22. Selectionof the top three in each discipline was based on results from the three BudLight Grand Prix events. An additional two riders were named based on the bestopportunity to earn medals. The series began at Sugarloaf/USA in Maine beforeChristmas and included competition Jan. 21-24 at Mt. Bachelor, Ore. plus thisweek at Mammoth Mountain Ski Area. Named to the Olympic Snowboard Team:
Ron Chiodi, 24, Stratton Mountain, Vt. (Rossignol snowboard)
Ross Powers, 18, S. Londonderry, Vt. (U.S. Snowboard Team, Burton snowboard,Coach Peter DelGiudice)
Todd Richards, 28, Breckenridge, Colo. (Morrow snowboard)
Cara-Beth Burnside, 29, Orange, Calif. (Burton snowboard)
Shannon Dunn, 25, Steamboat Springs, Colo. (Burton snowboard)
Michele Taggart, 26, Salem, Ore. (Salomon snowboard)
Barrett Christy, 27, Vail, Colo. (Gnu snowboard)
*Men’s Giant Slalom*
Adam Hostetter, 24, Tahoe City, Calif. (Fila snowboard; Coach: JerryMasterpool/Cross M)
Mike Jacoby, 28, Hood River, Ore. (U.S. Snowboard Team, Mistral snowboard;Coach: Peter Foley)
Chris Klug, 25, Aspen, Colo. (Burton snowboard; Coach: Rob Roy/World Pro Team)
*Women’s Giant Slalom*
Rosey Fletcher, 22, Girdwood, Alaska (Burton snowboard; Coach: Rob Roy/World ProTeam)
Lisa Kosglow, 24, Boise, Idaho (Cold as Ice snowboard; Coach: Nick Colavito)
Betsy Shaw, 32, E. Dorset, Vt. (Burton snowboard; Coach: Rob Roy/World Pro Team)
Sondra Van Ert, 32, Ketchum, Idaho (U.S. Snowboard Team, Marker snowboard;Coach: Peter Foley)
“Now it’s official,” said a smiling Peter Foley (Hood River, Ore.), head coachfor the team, as friends and family cheered the Olympians. Fletcher drew thedistinction of being the first American snowboarder to qualify for the Olympics;she won the first GS at Sugarloaf and was second in the GS at Mt. Bachelor.
Riders were chosen based on their two best results in the Grand Prix. The topthree riders, according to points, in each event — men and women, GS andhalfpipe — filled 12 spots and the last two places were chosen by the coacheswith final approval by a five-member selection panel.
Joining Foley, head coach of the U.S. Snowboard Team, on the coaching staff:Pete DelGiudice (Mammoth Lakes, Calif.), halfpipe coach with the U.S. SnowboardTeam; Rob Roy (Bend, Ore.), head coach of World Snowboard Team; Nick Colavito(Grand Junction, Colo.); and waxing technician Greg Guras (Breckenridge, Colo.).