Pogue Wins Giant Slalom Qualifier

CARRABASSETT VALLEY, Maine (AP) _ Anton Pogue of Hood River,Ore., on Wednesday won the giant slalom qualifier of the U.S.Snowboard Grand Prix, the first in a series of events to helpchoose the U.S. team for the first-time Olympic competition.

Pogue completed the Sugarloaf-USA course in 1 minute, 5.56seconds, the best among the 58 boarders who competed for 43 spotsin Thursday’s final. Another 22 men prequalified based on theirprevious performances.

Lukasz Starowicz of Poland and Mike Kildevaeld of Denmarkfinished second and third, respectively, in the FIS-sanctionedevent that was open to a limited number of snowboarders fromoutside the United States.

There was no qualifying giant slalom for the women because all35 entrants will race in the final.

The competition continues Friday and Saturday with the halfpipe,a freestyle event based on judges’ scores rather than times.

This week’s events are the first of three that will choose theseven men and seven women who will represent the United States insnowboarding at the games in February at Nagano, Japan.

The selections will be made Jan. 31 after the completion of thefinal Grand Prix series at Mammoth Mountain, Calif.

1. Anton Pogue, Hood River, Ore., 1 minute, 5.56 seconds.
2. Lukasz Starowicz, Poland, 1:05.65.
3. Mike Kildevaeld, Denmark, 1:06.67.
4. Peter Cook Rubincam, Salt Lake City, 1:07.44.
5. Jason Onley, Australia, 1:07.55.
6. Pascal Bergeron, Canada, 1:07.74.
7. Ryan Mullen, Minneapolis, 1:07.87.
8. Pierre Boileau, Canada, 1:07.88.
9. Pete Macomber, Buffalo, N.Y.,, 1:08.15.
10. Nicholas Miller, Burlington, Vt., 1:08.86.