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Say hello to the 2014 U.S. Olympic snowboard cross team

Trevor Jacob
Team USA’s Olympic snowboard cross team is no stranger to the top of the podium. Trevor Jacob, left, and Faye Gulini, right, celebrate a win at the Sprint U.S. Grand Prix at Canyons Resort in Park City, Utah. Photo by Tom Kelly/U.S. Snowboarding

Earning a spot on the U.S. Olympic Snowboard Cross team is never an easy task; talent has always run deep in the American squad. This year was no different, with 14 of the best of our domestic best all vying for those coveted Olympic berths. To earn their Ralph Lauren, these seven riders—four men and three women—had to battle it out with their USSA teammates, using their top two results from the first four FIS World Cups of 2014. Here's who earned the right to represent in Sochi and how it all shook out.

Trevor Jacob
Born:
Aug. 6,1993
Olympic history: Sochi will be his Olympic debut.
How he got here: Trevor was the only American to win a World Cup this season, winning his first-ever FIS event in Lake Louise, Canada. He followed that up with a 10th-place finish in Montafon, Austria, easily putting him on the top of the heap.
Of note: In his early teens, Jacob was a halfpipe phenom, landing himself in the finals of the prestigious U.S. Open of Snowboarding and getting a lot of industry attention along the way. Two years ago he started racing snowboard cross, winning the 2013 National Championship title in his rookie debut.
Trevor says: "The fire is for boarder cross. It was never really there for halfpipe. I kind of got talked into pipe because I was good at it, but this [snowboard cross] is something for myself and is super meaningful and I can do it for the right reasons."

Alex Deibold
Alex Deibold’s wax-tech skills ought to come in handy in Sochi. Photo by Sarah Brunson/U.S. Snowboarding

Alex Deibold
Born: May 8, 1986
Olympic history: Sochi will be his Olympic debut.
How he got here: Alex secured his spot with a third-place finish in Lake Louise—the first American man to step onto the podium this season—and backed that up with a 10th in Vallnord, Andorra.
Of note: Deibold went to the 2010 Vancouver Olympics as a wax tech for the U.S. Team—not an unimportant job when your podium is determined by fractions of a second—so despite never competing in the Olympic arena, he has more Olympic experience than the average Olympic rookie.

Nate Holland
Born:
Nov. 8,1978
Olympic history: U.S. Team member, 2006, 2010; fourth place, 2010
How he got here: Two-time Olympian, Nate Holland was the third member of the team to secure his spot with a fourth place in Vallnord, Andorra and a seventh-place finish in Lake Louise, Canada.
Of note: At the first FIS event of the season in Montafon, Austria, Nate suffered a broken collarbone in practice, sidelining him for the event. After a quick surgery, Nate got back on snow without missing a start and secured two top ten finishes and won his eighth X Games gold before leaving for Sochi.

Nick Baumgartner
Born: Dec. 17, 1981
Olympic history: U.S. Team member, 2010
How he got here: Baumgartner was awarded the coaches’ discretion spot for his three top-10 finishes in the FIS World Cups.
Of note: Despite lacking a top-four finish going into the Olympics, Baumgartner, a veteran rider with previous Olympic experience, should fare well in Sochi.
Nick says: "There is nothing more amazing than representing your country at the Olympics, and biting on that gold medal is what I want in 2014 at Sochi."

Lindsey Jacobellis
Born: Aug. 18, 1985
Olympic history: U.S. Team member 2006, 2010; silver, 2006
How she got here: Jacobellis was the first woman to earn her spot, with a win in Lake Louise, Canada, and a pair of thirds in Vallnord, Andorra.
Of note: Jacobellis, the most decorated woman in snowboard cross, was sidelined for two seasons with an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury. This is her first season back and she’s already back on top of her game, with her eye on that gold medal that slipped away from her way back in 2006. 

Jackie Hernandez
Hernandez hasn’t been racing long, but she’s been racing strong. Photo by Sarah Brunson/U.S. Snowboarding

Jackie Hernandez
Born: Dec. 2, 1992
Olympic history: Sochi will be her Olympic debut.
How she got here: Hernandez earned the second spot on the U.S. Team with a sixth-place finish at the season opener in Montafon, Austria, and followed that up with a ninth-place finish in Vallnord, Andorra.
Of note: Hernandez, a relative rookie who started competing in World Cups only two years ago, already has one World Cup win to her name.

 

 

Faye Gulini
Born: Mar. 21, 1992
Olympic history: U.S. Team member, 2010
How she got here: A 10th-place finish in Lake Louise, Canada, and a 26th-place finish at Vallnord, Andorra, ranked her as the third-best American woman, earning her the coaches’ discretion spot.
Of note: At 21 years old, Gulini already has an Olympic performance under her belt—12th in Vancouver in 2010—and knows what to expect heading into Sochi.

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