Dew Tour's iON Mountain Championships in Breckenridge, Colorado have officially been announced as the first of five Olympic selection events that will ultimately decide which snowboard and freeski athletes will represent the U.S. in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA) made the announcement Wednesday after many close conversations with Alli Sports, a division of the NBC Sport Group, on how they will work together in order to add the Dew Tour to the roster of Olympic selection events along with the four-stop Sprint U.S. Grand Prix.
Nick Goepper is always the kid to watch in freeski
So what exactly does this mean? It means that the level of competition will be at an all-time high at this year's Dew Tour, and this event will officially set the stage as to what to expect from the world's best snowboard and freeski athletes! Expect the best in class athletes from around the world, but be sure to watch which Americans score high as this is their time to shine.
With the addition of snowboard and freeski slopestyle events to the 2014 Winter Olympics, be sure to expect big things from the Dew Tour team that will be building the course! Last year many of the athletes referred to Dew Tour's slopestyle event as having "the best course ever," largely due to the technical obstacle variety and the inclusion of four large jump sections.
“This course is sick! Four jumps, three rails – it’s a really technical setup. When you get to ride a really big course it is so much more fun," said the Canadian victor, Mark McMorris, of last year's Men's Snowboard Slopestyle at Dew Tour.
Mark McMorris, looking to upset the U.S. Olympic hopefuls.
As for the halfpipe, last year Dew Tour debuted the industry's first cable camera to be slung down the center in order to offer a fresh angle on the athletes' amplitude and trick technicality from a birds-eye, frontal perspective – the angle was later presented and accepted to be used during the next Olympic games.
Shaun White will be working for a 3-peat in halfpipe in Sochi
With the Dew Tour Experience and events by day at the Breckenridge Ski Resort combined with the concert and film festival by night at the Riverwalk Center, this year's iON Mountain Championships will truly be a Dew Tour stop to attend in person!
For the athletes, it is important to note that Dew Tour will be making some minor changes to align with USSA judging criteria, such as bringing in more international judges to meet International Olympic Committee Standards – more to come at a later date.
The final rosters for the U.S. Olympic team will be announced on January 22, prior to the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, taking place February 6-23.
The 2013 Dew Tour will be available on NBC, NBC Sports Network, Dew Tour Live on DewTour.com, NBC Sports Live Extra and the NBC Sports Live Extra App - the NBC Sports Group’s live streaming product for desktops, mobile devices, and tablets.
Dew Tour Live – Dew Tour’s dedicated digital platform – will stream every competition live bringing more Dew Tour action, interviews and behind-the-scenes access than ever before.