Ryan Stassel & Shaun White win big at back-to-back Olympic qualifiers, White locks a spot to Sochi
In a marathon day of slopestyle contests, US riders battled through two back-to-back slope Olympic qualifiers in Mammoth, California, fighting to secure a spot on the first ever US slopestyle Olympic team. Bluebird skies and a solid course welcomed riders back into the competition fold after the chaos of the cancelled Breckenridge Grand Prix last weekend.
Ryan Stassel was the man of the morning, stepping up to stomp a win in Olympic qualifier #3, a step ahead of Sage Kotsenburg, who took second, and Chas Guldemond in third. For his part, Kotsenburg came into the morning’s contest fresh off of a brutal crash, brushing off what he thought was a broken nose and laying down a run solid enough for second. Shaun White ended up in last place in the 3rd qualifier, also taking a massive slam but failing to recuperate for a podium spot.
Stepping into qualifier #4, Shaun White managed to rally back from the morning’s vicious crash and threw down one run for a 95.2 and the win. Capping off a ridiculously impressive day , Sage Kotsenburg snapped up a 90.60 in the fourth qualifier, and his second 2nd place finish of the day. Kyle Mack rounded out the podium in third, as the morning’s victor, Ryan Stassel, ended the day in fourth.
With the win, White mathematically locked a spot to Sochi, joining women’s champ Jamie Anderson as the only other US slope rider to secure a spot on the Olympic team. The weekend is far from over for White and the rest of the US snowboarders, however, as there is one more slopestyle competition to go this weekend, plus three halfpipe contests. As White is also vying for a spot the the US men’s halfpipe team, he made the decision to forgo his second run of slope qualifier #4, probably a very wise call considering.
Results from Olympic qualifier #3:
1. Ryan Stassel: 95.00
2. Sage Kotsenburg: 92.6
3. Chas Guldemond: 88.6
Results from Olympic qualifier #4:
1. Shaun White: 94.80
2. Sage Kotsenburg: 90.60
3. Kyle Mack: 87.80
Current US Olympic snowboard team rankings list, based off of Olympic qualification points earned:
1. Shaun White: 2,520 (Qualified to Sochi)
2. Chas Guldemond: 2,660
3. Ryan Stassel: 2,280
4. Sage Kotsenburg: 2,850
5. Brandon Davis: 1,680
6. Kyle Mack: 1,420
7. Eric Beauchemin: 1,540
8. Brett Moody: 1,520
9. Spencer Link: 1,290
10. Nik Baden: 1,380