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Feb
5

Shaun White pulls out of slopestyle over safety fears
Wednesday February 5, 2014 - Email this article to a friend

The Norwegian athlete, Torstein Horgmo, has broken his collar bone and others say the course is too dangerous. British athletes have been questioning its safety. Now the most famous snowboarder in the world has pulled out of the event.

Shaun White has said he is not taking part in the new Olympic sport of slopestyle.

It as stunned many in the sport on the eve of Sochi.

"After much deliberation with my team, I have made the decision to focus solely on trying to bring home the third straight gold medal in halfpipe for Team USA. I know my fans will have my back on this difficult decision. Thanks for the continued support," he said.

Earlier Shaun White described the course is "intimidating" and "a challenge".

He fell on a training run and hurt his left wrist. It was the latest in a series of small injures he has suffered.

He will now concentrate on retaining his gold medal in the half-pipe.

We will bring you further news and reaction shortly on PlanetSKI.

White withdrawsWhite withdraws

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The course, Extreme Park, is living up to its name.

A 26-year old medal contender from Norway is now out of The Games after his training accident.

The first qualification rounds begin on Thursday, ahead of Friday's Opening Ceremony.

Olympic organisers have said they would act after being asked to make changes to the slopestyle course in Sochi.

"It's been a bit scary getting used to hitting the jumps," the British snowboarder, Billy Morgan, told the BBC.

His fellow British athlete, Jenny Jones, said a number of competitors were far from happy.

"People are a little bit concerned about the speed," said the 33-year-old.

The International Ski and Snowboard Federation (FIS)  blamed the injury of Torstein Horgmo on the jump he was attempting rather than the course.

Slopestyle is a new discipline to the Winter Olympics. 

The details of the course were made public last August and it has been designed in conjunction with officials who shape the X Games course.

The changes have been welcomed by the GB Snowboard head coach, Hamish McKnight.

"The course rode much better for our guys today, because it was cold last night they got the machines out and were able to smooth out the course. This made a big difference," he said to the media.

"They also made some changes following yesterday's feedback and may make a few more tweaks to one of the rails and the take-off of the second jump. We will see tomorrow."

PlanetSKI will be covering the Sochi Olymics in full and we start our coverage on Thursday as some of the events get underway - including the qualifying events for slopestyle.

British athletes will be in action  in the Men's/ Women's Snowboard Slopestyle Qualifiers - Billy Morgan, Jamie Nicholls, Jenny Jones and Aimee Fuller will be on the course. 

For the spirit of the mountains

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