U.S. Ski and Snowboard adds Paralympic Alpine, snowboard teams – Home of the Olympic Channel

U.S. Ski and Snowboard is integrating Para Alpine skiers and snowboarders onto its roster in the latest move to unite the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Movements.
“The integration of our internally managed Para Alpine and snowboard teams within U.S. Ski and Snowboard is a monumental step for inclusion, development and growth of the sports,” Julie Dussliere, the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee Chief of Paralympics and Internally Managed Sports, said in a press release. “We believe the governance transfer will serve as an important model for more national governing bodies to follow in the years to come.”
The USOPC managed Para Alpine skiing and snowboarding before Tuesday’s announcement.
U.S. Ski and Snowboard provides its athletes resources including elite coaching, sports science and medicine and access to the USANA Center of Excellence, a training facility in Park City, Utah.
Erik Leirfallom will lead the teams as the newly named Para sport director. Leirfallom has been the high performance Para Alpine race coach at Park City’s National Ability Center since 2016 and was a U.S. Para Alpine ski team coach from 2007-10.
At last year’s Winter Paralympics, the U.S. earned one Alpine skiing medal (Thomas Walsh‘s slalom silver) and and four snowboarding medals, including Brenna Huckaby‘s banked slalom gold.
The ski and snowboard move comes four years after the U.S. Olympic Committee changed its name to the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) to promote inclusion.
Then in 2020, Olympic Day, annually celebrated worldwide on June 23 (the birthdate of the modern Olympics), was in the U.S. renamed Olympic and Paralympic Day.
In 2021, the Tokyo Games marked the first for which Olympians and Paralympians received the same prize money from the USOPC for medals — $37,500 for gold, $22,500 for silver and $15,000 for bronze — increasing Paralympic payouts as much as 400 percent.
U.S. Ski and Snowboard joins other national governing bodies for Olympic sports that also manage Paralympic sports, such as USA Hockey (sled hockey) and USA Volleyball (sitting volleyball).
The USOPC manages some other Paralympic sports, such as swimming and track and field.
The USOPC also manages Paralympic Nordic skiing, which includes two sports that have different national governing bodies for the Olympics. Cross-country skiing is part of U.S. Ski and Snowboard, while biathlon is under U.S. Biathlon. Paralympic Nordic skiing is in discussion for future involvement with U.S. Ski and Snowboard.
Other Paralympic sports have separate organizations, such as the National Wheelchair Basketball Association.
OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!
The U.S. men’s hockey team won its first seven games of a world championship for the first time in history, running the table in group play to reach Thursday’s quarterfinals.
The Americans beat Sweden 4-3 in overtime in Tuesday’s group finale at a tournament co-hosted by Finland and Latvia.
Winnipeg Jets defenseman Dylan Samberg scored 97 seconds into overtime after the U.S. squandered a 3-1 lead in the third period. The U.S. gets Czechia (formerly called the Czech Republic) in the quarterfinals.
The Americans also won in group play over Finland (4-1), Hungary (7-1), Germany (3-2), Austria (4-1), Denmark (3-0) and France (9-0).
The U.S. won its first six games at a worlds once before, in 2018.
While the NHL didn’t participate in the last two Olympics, some NHL players annually play at the world championship, which takes place during the Stanley Cup playoffs.
This year’s U.S. team, which includes three 2022 Olympians, has zero players with NHL All-Star experience for the first time at worlds since 2010. In most years, there have been one or two players with All-Star experience while most choose rest after a seven-month NHL campaign or are still playing in the NHL playoffs.
The U.S. head coach is San Jose Sharks head coach David Quinn, who also coached the U.S. at the 2022 Olympics (quarterfinals) and 2022 Worlds (fourth place).
Last year, the U.S. men lost a world championship semifinal for an 11th consecutive time, again missing out on a first gold or silver finish since 1950. The only time the U.S. won the title at a standalone worlds was in 1933, when it played five games.
The U.S. lost all 11 of its semifinals at worlds since the IIHF reinstituted a bracketed playoff round in 1992.
OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!
Olympic gold medalists from Russia are barred from upcoming world championships in taekwondo and fencing, while others from their nation will be allowed, as those sports follow IOC recommendations for reintegrating Russian athletes.
Vladislav Larin and Maksim Khramtsov, who in Tokyo became the first taekwondo athletes from Russia to win an Olympic title, had their applications to compete in next week’s world championships denied by World Taekwondo, according to multiple reports.
World Taekwondo said Tuesday that it admitted 23 neutral athletes from Belarus and Russia and that two athletes’ applications were rejected because they didn’t fulfill conditions for participation outlined by the IOC’s recommendations in March. World Taekwondo did not name the two rejected athletes.
On March 20, the IOC recommended to international sports federations that, should they decide to readmit athletes from Russia and Belarus as neutrals, to only accept those who do not actively support the war in Ukraine and are not actively contracted by the military.
Several sports have since taken steps toward reintegrating some Russian and Belarusian athletes, including taekwondo and fencing.
In response, Ukraine has boycotted some competitions, including taekwondo worlds. Ukraine also boycotted the world judo championships earlier this month, the first world championships in an Olympic sport run by an IOC-sanctioned sport federation to include athletes from Russia since December 2021.
Also Tuesday, the president of Italy’s National Olympic Committee said that at least some fencers from Russia would not be allowed into the country for the world championships in that sport in July in Milan on the advice of the Italian government and following the IOC recommendations, according to Reuters. He specifically named Tokyo Olympic sabre champion Sofia Pozdniakova, whose father is Russian Olympic Committee president Stanislav Pozdnyakov.
Fencing’s international governing body (FIE) has approved some athletes from Russia to compete internationally as neutrals, but that list includes neither Pozdniakova nor any of the nation’s other six gold medalists from the Tokyo Games, according to Russian news agency TASS.
FIE lifted restrictions on athletes from Russia and Belarus earlier in March, while the IOC was still recommending all athletes be banned. But so far, no Russian or Belarusian athlete has returned to compete in the sport’s top-level World Cup and Grand Prix events.
OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!


Leave a Comment