July 12, 2005
PARK CITY, Utah — The U.S. Ski Team and U.S. Snowboarding will begin their march to the Olympics this winter with the most aggressive domestic event schedule ever, marketed under the banner of a new 10 Weeks to Torino marketing campaign. The campaign will feature national TV coverage of events plus contests and sweepstakes for ski and snowboard fans. The 10 Weeks to Torino campaign will kickoff Dec. 1-4 with the Visa Birds of Prey World Cup alpine races in Beaver Creek, CO, and will continue through the naming of final Olympic Teams in late January.
"10 Weeks to Torino is an exciting opportunity to take our already existing series of domestic events and wrap a promotional program around it to build excitement with our fans leading up to the Olympics," said U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association Vice President of Marketing Communications Tom Kelly. "It's part of our newly-focused marketing plan to build greater public awareness of our tremendous ski and snowboard athletes who will be the stars of the Torino Olympics in February."
Besides cheering on America's top skiers and snowboarders in person, fans have several opportunities to join in the fun and support the Team at the same time. 10 Weeks to Torino will feature contests and sweepstakes for U.S. Ski Team and U.S. Snowboarding fans, both at events and online. Fans can follow the Team at usskiteam.com and ussnowboarding.com, which will feature a special 10 Weeks to Torino events and contest page.
America's top athletes including alpine World Cup champion Bode Miller (Franconia, NH), freestyle World Cup champions Jeremy Bloom (Loveland, CO) and Jeret "Speedy Peterson (Boise, ID), snowboard World Championships gold medalists Lindsey Jacobellis (Bondville, VT) and Seth Wescott (Farmington, ME) and a host of others will compete in USSA's lineup of premier domestic events including alpine and freestyle World Cups, U.S. Championships for cross country, ski jumping and nordic combined and U.S. Snowboarding's prestigious Chevrolet U.S. Snowboard Grand Prix series.
Coverage of eight events will air on NBC, America's Olympic network, and re-airs on Outdoor Life Network, the leader in action sports and outdoor adventure programming. One highlight for viewers is sure to be same-day coverage on NBC of the U.S. Ski Team Olympic Trials (site TBA) where four athletes — one male and one female in each moguls and aerials — will secure wildcard spots on the U.S. Olympic Freestyle Ski Team.
The schedule for 10 Weeks to Torino (including television coverage):
Nov. 29-Dec. 4 — VISA Birds of Prey, Beaver Creek, CO; NBC/OLN
Dec. 9-11 — Aspen Winternational, Aspen, CO; NBC/OLN
Dec. 13-17 — Chevrolet U.S. Snowboard Grand Prix, Breckenridge, CO; NBC/OLN
Dec. 30-31 — U.S. Ski Team Olympic Trials, location TBA; NBC
Jan. 3-10 — U.S. Cross Country Championships and U.S. Disabled Cross Country Championships, Soldier Hollow, UT
Jan. 6-8 — Chevrolet U.S. Snowboard Grand Prix, Mt. Bachelor, OR; NBC/OLN
Jan. 12-14 — Chevrolet Freestyle International, Deer Valley, UT; NBC/OLN
Jan. 19-21 — Chevrolet U.S. Snowboard Grand Prix, Mountain Creek, NJ; NBC/OLN
Jan. 20-22 — Nature Valley Freestyle Cup, Lake Placid, NY; NBC/OLN
Jan. 21-22 - U.S. Ski Jumping & Nordic Combined Championships, Steamboat Springs, CO
Not only will U.S. freestyle athletes have the chance to earn spots on the Olympic Team, but also athletes' performances at all USSA 10 Weeks to Torino events will factor into qualifying for U.S. Olympic teams.
"The leadup events of 10 Weeks to Torino are critical to our Olympic preparation," said USSA Vice President of Athletics Alan Ashley. "We are tracking well to our goal of being Best in the World in skiing and snowboarding in Torino, but this Olympic qualifying period is important to select and prepare our very best athlettes to compete in February."
Members of the U.S. Olympic ski and snowboard teams will be chosen based on results from World Cup competitions. The two exceptions are the unique wild-card qualifying contest for freestyle skiers and criteria for the U.S. snowboard halfpipe team, which will be chosen exclusively from results in the three-event U.S. Snowboard Grand Prix series. Tentative dates for U.S. Olympic Team selection announcements are:
Ski Jumping — Jan. 8, 2006
Cross Country — Jan. 12, 2006
Nordic Combined — Jan. 16, 2006
Alpine — Jan. 25, 2006
Freestyle — Jan. 25, 2006
Snowboard — Jan. 25, 2006