During the International Ski Federation (FIS) Snowboard Committee meeting held in Milano, Italy, in early October, the United States Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA) proposed an increase in the number of snowboarders who could participate at the 2002 Salt Lake Olympics and a change to the halfpipe specifications to allow for larger, Super Dragon-shaped pipes.
These proposals were just a couple of the topics of discussion at the annual meeting, which also revolved around such things as judging rules and contest schedules. Some proposed changes, such as adding a last-chance qualifying round to the boardercross events (as is currently done on the non-FIS sanctioned Swatch Boardercross tour) and awarding prize money all the way down to sixteenth place, were not accepted.
As for the USSA proposals, there was consensus that the base for qualification and seeding for the Olympics shall be the FIS snowboard points, and that the first deadline for allocation of a national quota will be the November 2001 FIS snowboard point list, but the committee did not agree on the total number of competitors who will participate at the Olympics.
The USSA felt the increase in number of athletes needed to be finalized soon so Olympic organizers can plan to house the athletes in the Salt Lake or probably Park City area, where the snowboard events will occur. The increase could also help accommodate the inclusion of boardercross as an Olympic event, if it is approved by the Salt Lake Organizing Committee (SLOC). FIS and USSA would like to see the inclusion of the event, but SLOC is balking and the IOC Executive Committee had not accepted the proposal as of its last meeting in September, 1999.
In regards to using the Super Pipe Dragon at the Grand Prix events–which would require an increase of the current FIS halfpipe specifications to a maximum wall height of 5.5 meters–it was agreed that there would be a video review and possible formal rule change for the ’00/01 season.
Dates for the U.S. Grand Prix for the 2000/01 season were established as December 14—17, 2000; January 5—7, 2001; and March 2—4, 2001.
In regards to the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City, Utah, a report stated that the stadium and finish area have been redesigned, with work commencing in June 2000. The exact design will be presented at the next FIS Snowboard Committee meeting, to be held in Melbourne, Australia, May 28—June 3, 2000.
Based on the decision of the Snowboard Committee during its meeting in Prague, it was confirmed that the disciplines at Salt Lake City will be parallel giant slalom and halfpipe.