Chloe Kim, Jamie Anderson and Red Gerard are set to go for repeat Olympic gold in Beijing.
Shaun White hasn’t qualified yet.
The first U.S. snowboarders met Olympic selection criteria via world rankings updated Monday. U.S. Ski and Snowboard rules state that the top two riders per gender in halfpipe and slopestyle in this week’s world rankings will be nominated to the team, should they also rank in the world top six.
The full U.S. snowboard team will be announced next month and must be confirmed by the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee. When all is said and done, up to four riders per gender per event can be named to the team.
Kim and fellow halfpipe rider Maddie Mastro qualified as they are ranked Nos. 2 and 5 in the world. Kim is ranked below China’s Cai Xuetong, but make no mistake the American is favored to become the first woman to repeat as Olympic halfpipe champion.
Kim beat a field including Cai at Dew Tour on Sunday, running her win streak to five contests since returning from a 19-month break between riding a snowboard in 2020. Mastro, like Kim going to her second Olympics, crashed hard in the Dew Tour final after qualifying in first place.
Mastro is the last person to beat Kim in competition at the March 2019 Burton U.S. Open.
No U.S. men’s halfpipe riders are ranked in the top six in the world.
White, who finished fourth, seventh and eighth in his three starts this year after a three-year break between competitions, moved up to No. 13 in the world and third among Americans after Taylor Gold (No. 8) and Chase Josey (No. 12). He would be ranked a little higher if not for a lack of competing.
White will qualify for his fifth Olympic team if he finishes first or second at the last Olympic qualifier in Mammoth Mountain, California, in early January. It’s possible that he qualifies if he finishes third at Mammoth. If White doesn’t qualify via Mammoth podium finish, he is expected to be chosen for the team in January via coaches’ discretionary pick(s).
Anderson, who won both Olympic women’s slopestyle titles in 2014 and 2018, was bumped from No. 1 in the world to No. 2 by New Zealand’s Zoi Sadowski-Synnott, who won Dew Tour. No woman has won three Olympic snowboarding gold medals.
Gerard, who in PyeongChang became the youngest Olympic snowboarding gold medalist in history at 17, is ranked second in men’s slopestyle behind Norwegian Marcus Kleveland. On Saturday, Gerard won Dew Tour on the contest’s last run, beating a field that included Kleveland.
Dusty Henricksen grabbed the second available U.S. men’s slopestyle spot as he’s ranked third in the world, just above Chris Corning. Henricksen, an 18-year-old who won X Games Aspen last season, is going to his first Olympics.
All U.S. snowboarders who qualify via slopestyle can also compete in big air at the Olympics.
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