Last night the International Olympic Committee announced that the slopestyle discipline for both ski and snowboard would be added to the program of events for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
The decision was reached last night by the IOC's Executive Board before the 123rd IOC Session in Durban, South Africa after first being touted by the Olympic Programme Commission to the Executive Board back in October last year. The OPC studied the proposal of the individual International Sports Federations and compiled a detailed analysis of the events at last winter's World Championships. The OC have also agreed to add the snowboard parallel special slalom to the 2014 games, following April's inclusions - ski halfpipe, women’s ski jumping, biathlon mixed relay, figure skating team event and luge team relay.
"We are very pleased with the addition of ski and snowboard slopestyle and snowboard special slalom in the Olympic Winter Games programme," said IOC President Jacques Rogge. "Such events provide great entertainment for the spectators and add further youthful appeal to our already action-packed line-up of Olympic winter sports. We look forward to welcoming all the athletes to Sochi in 2014."
"Slopestyle is a very popular sport," IOC President Jacques Rogge said. "It is growing very fast. You have young, dedicated, spectacular athletes and definitely I believe that it has the same future that we had with the beginning of snowboard in '98 in Nagano."
The addition of slopestyle could be great news for the UK with the likes of Jamie Nicholls and Aimee Fuller currently flying up through the ranks in the TTR World Snowboard Championships. The two British youngsters had great seasons on the international scene and Jamie Nicholls has proven to be among Nike's most accomplished young riders. Britain also boasts a few Winter X Games medals too, with James Woods picking up a podium in last year's ski slopestyle at Tignes Euro X Games and Jenny Jones picking up four medals in the past three years, three of which were gold. Hopefully other up and coming British skiers and snowboarders, such as Katie Summerhayes and Sparrow Knox, will also be hitting form at the right time to bring some medals home!
Written by Stephen Adam