USHUAIA, Argentina (Sept. 5) – The 2014 Olympic Winter Games qualifying period opens Sept. 7 for slopestyle skiing with the first FIS World Cup slopestyle event of the season in Argentina. The sport will make its Olympic debut in Sochi, Russia. Among the U.S. Freeskiing athletes slated to compete are X Games medalist Keri Herman (Breckenridge, CO) and Emilia Wint (Denver, CO), who recently won The North Face Freeski Open of New Zealand. Also present are newly added U.S. Freeskiing Rookie Team members Aaron Blunck (Crested Butte, CO), Annalisa Drew (Andover, MA) and Willie Borm (Chaska, MN).
"I’m really looking forward to contributing to setting the Olympic qualifying pace at Ushuaia," Emilia Wint said. "It’s going to be great to show off slopestyle at Sochi so that world can see what a fun and cool sport slopestyle and our community has always been."
The 17-month qualifying period provides individual athletes with opportunity to achieve required international ranking to be eligible for Olympic selection and helps the USA earn nation's quota spots.
"The FIS World Cup in Ushuaia, Argentina is the first Olympic qualifier for slopestyle skiing leading up to Sochi 2014," U.S. Freeskiing slopestyle coach Skogen Sprang said. "This is such an important milestone for the sport and its athletes. The next 17 months will surely provide a great show and an exciting race to the Olympic games."