The U.S. Olympic ski jumping team, originally two members, is now up to five athletes.
Decker Dean was the latest addition, giving the U.S. four men, enough to also participate in the men’s team event.
The U.S. will extend its streak of competing in every Olympic men’s ski jumping team event, which was added in 1988, according to Olympedia.org.
Kevin Bickner was the first ski jumper to qualify for the Olympic team by winning trials on Christmas. The U.S. earned a second men’s place by the time quota spots were announced last week.
When other nations chose not to use spots, the U.S. moved up the reallocation list, receiving two more men’s spots and its first women’s spot (Anna Hoffmann).
The second and third men’s spots went to Patrick Gasienica and Casey Larson after 17-year-old Erik Belshaw, the second American in Continental Cup standings, declined a spot. Dean was next up in the Continental Cup standings.
The U.S. last put a man into the top 10 at the Olympics in 1984, not counting the team event, according to Olympedia. The last U.S. man to finish in the top 10 of an individual World Cup was 2002.
The U.S.’ lone Olympic ski jumping medal came in 1974. That medal was actually awarded for the 1924 Chamonix Winter Games. It was learned 50 years later that a math error denied American Anders Haugen a bronze medal, and the IOC corrected the results.
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