Grand Prix Kicks Off This Week

Grand Prix Kicks Off This Week

FS 360 + CAB 720 + 720 CRIPPLER + CAB 900 + SWITCH BS 720 + BS 2X CHUCK + ALLEY-OOP 540 = VICTORY

Every rider who stands atop a Grand Prix halfpipe practices their own brand of alchemy in hopes of turning their personal array of spins, flips, twists, and grabs into Vancouver gold. The styles and sponsor logos may differ greatly, but each competitor strives to follow the same route to Olympic glory as Ross Powers, Kelly Clark, Shaun White and Hannah Teter. That path is the U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix.

Since it was created fourteen years ago, the U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix has become the premier proving ground for past, current, and future Olympic champions. The results speak for themselves: Since snowboarding made its Olympic debut at the Nagano Games in 1998, Americans have earned an astonishing ten medals in halfpipe, which is more than all other nations combined. How has the United States achieved such unprecedented success? By having a U.S. team selection process which rewards only the very best riders with access to the Olympic arena. While the Grand Prix series has remained constant since 1998, Americans have continued to become even more dominant in international competition.

So what makes the Grand Prix so unique? Unlike other countries, the U.S. chooses its Olympic snowboard team based solely on results earned during the five Grand Prix events which lead up to the Vancouver Games. A rider's two top finishes are chosen, and whoever performed best makes the cut.

This year's Grand Prix Series is set to showcase start lists that display more depth of talent than ever. When watching a Grand Prix, one must realize that each of the sixteen snowboarders who have risen through the ranks to make one of the five finals is an Olympic-caliber competitor.

The U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix TV schedule:

U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix – Copper Mountain, CO airdates:
NBC – 12/13/09 – 2pm est
Versus – 12/27/09 – 4pm est

U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix – Mammoth, CA airdates:
NBC – 1/10/10 – 1:30pm est
Versus – 1/17/10 – 4pm est

U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix – Park City, UT airdates:
NBC – 1/24/10 – 3pm est
Versus – 1/31/10 – 6pm est hp#1
2/7/10 – 3pm est hp#2

Paul Mitchell Progression Session airdates:
Copper Mountain – 12/27/09 – 5pm est
Telluride – 1/10/10 – 5pm est
Mammoth – 1/17/10 – 5pm est

Look for additional Grand Prix coverage on FuelTV.