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Thursday January 25, 2018 - Email this article to a friend

The skiers & snowboarders have been announced. It's a record number: 25 athletes will compete across alpine, cross country + freestyle.

The previous record for the number of athletes going was 22 back in 1956 when the Games were held in Cortina, Italy.

Freestyle skiing is the largest of the ski and snowboard disciplines with 11 athletes selected, while six snowboarders will compete in PyeongChang including Zoe Gillings-Brier who is set for her fourth Winter Olympics.    

But there's no Madi Rowlands. 

The Youth Olympic ski halfpipe champion had done enough to qualify in both the halfpipe and slopestyle events but suffered a knee injury earlier this month, ruling her out of contention.

And none of Britain's moguls skiers have been selected to compete.

Four alpine and four cross-country skiers complete the team.    

14 of the squad will be competing at their first Games.  

Dave Ryding, Andrew Musgrave and Andrew Young join Gillings-Brier as the more experienced athletes with the three skiers selected for their third Olympic Winter Games.  

Andrew MusgraveAndrew Musgrave















With an average age of just 24 years old, Ski & Snowboard Team Leader Dan Hunt sees PyeongChang as one of the first major steps on a journey that could move Great Britain towards being one of the world's leading snowsports nations.

The snowboard athlete Katie Ormerod is one of the our brightest medal hopes.

Katie Ormerod, Team GBKatie Ormerod, Team GB

"When you analyse this squad, it's a pretty good indicator of where British snowsports will be heading over the next four years to Beijing and then beyond," said Hunt. 

"One-third of the squad are 22 or younger and only four athletes have competed at more than one Games. 

"We will be competing in more disciplines in PyeongChang than we have before and we've never had more athletes heading to an Olympics with genuine expectations about how well their performances will stack up against the best in the world. 

"Of course you can never predict how the results will ultimately fall, but I am certain that we're going to Korea with opportunities to deliver more world class performances than a British ski and snowboard team ever done."
UK Sport has set a target of at least five medals at Pyeongchang, which would be a best for GB. It's expecting two of those medals to come on the snow. Team GB's Ski & Snowboard squad for PyeongChang 2018:

Alpine Skiing Charlie Guest, aged 24, from Perth, Scotland, Dave Ryding, 31, from Leyland, Lancashire Laurie Taylor, 21, from Basingstoke, Hampshire Alex Tilley, 24, from Torphins, Scotland.

Cross-Country Skiing Andrew Musgrave, 27, from Poole, Dorset Callum Smith, 25, from Inverurie, Scotland Annika Taylor, 24, from Truckee, USA Andrew Young, 25, from Huntly, Scotland.

Freestyle Skiing Izzy Atkin, 19, from Boston, USA Murray Buchan, 26, from Edinburgh, Scotland Rowan Cheshire, 22, from Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire Alexander Glavatsky-Yeadon, 23, from Hong Kong Tyler Harding, 21, from Halifax, Yorkshire Emily Sarsfield, 34, from Durham Peter Speight, 25, from Sheffield, Yorkshire Katie Summerhayes, 22, from Sheffield, Yorkshire Molly Summerhayes, 20, from Sheffield, Yorkshire Lloyd Wallace, 22, from Bath, Somerset James Woods, 26, from Sheffield, Yorkshire.

Snowboarding Rowan Coultas, 20, from Bedford Aimee Fuller, 26, from Belfast, Northern Ireland Zoë Gillings-Brier, 32, from Douglas, Isle of Man Billy Morgan, 28, from Southampton, Hampshire Jamie Nicholls, 24, from Bradford, Yorkshire Katie Ormerod, 20, from Brighouse, Yorkshire.

Aimee Fuller, Team GBAimee Fuller, Team GB

Dave Ryding leads a team of four alpine skiers which will compete across the technical disciplines in PyeongChang.

Dave RydingDave Ryding















Ryding, returning for his third Games, earned six top 10 World Cup finishes last year including a podium at Kitzbühel, and has backed that up with four more Top Tens this season.

"It's definitely a bit different going into these Games compared to the last two," said Ryding. "The first time I went hoping for some good performances, then last time I went in knowing that on my day I could mix it in the top 30.

"This time I'm ranked in the top 15 and that's where the medals usually come from. I've had some good results recently and I can build on that."

Commenting on the fact he is entering the Games with more media attention than ever before, Ryding added, "There's a lot more recognition now, which is nice - it means I'm probably in with a chance."  

Our Chief News Reporter, Jane Peel, will be following all the athletes at Pyeongchang.

If you are confused by all the names and disciplines then follow the link as she assess the realistic chances we have of medals, the impact they may have and what the Games and the future may hold. Dan Hunt and Jane PeelPerformance Director Dan Hunt with PlanetSKI's Jane Peel

There has been some reaction already from the athletes.

"I'M GOING TO THE OLYMPICS!!!  So excited and proud to qualify for my first ever Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang! Thanks to everyone who has supported me on this journey!! See you in South Korea!!"  said Katie Ormerod.

Jane and KatieJane and Katie

Billy Morgan said: "I'm stoked. It's been four years since we were last here so it's great for it to all come together again. Seeing all the kit just makes it even better. We've been out in South Korea for a test event and it was pretty epic so I'm really happy to spending a whole Games out there."

Jane and BillyJane and Billy


Lloyd Wallace was more succinct on Facebook.

"I'M GOING TO THE OLYMPICS!! 😱🔥💃🏽🎉🙌🏼👊🏼💪🏼," he posted.

Lloyd and JaneLloyd and Jane

"So excited and honoured to be announced as part of Team GB at the Winter Olympics in South Korea next month! " said Emily Sarsfield.

"It has been a crazy journey with many challenges but I'm so greatful to all the people who have helped, encouraged and supported me on this adventure. Huge thank you to my family, friends and sponsors...without you this wouldn't have been possible.

"I will be skiing my heart out for you all in Korea and hope I can do you proud!" 

Emily Sarsfield, Team GBEmily Sarsfield, Team GB

"It's definitely different approaching these Olympics compared to the last couple of times," said the cross-country skier, Andrew Musgrave.

"Vancouver was a learning experience - I was never realistically going to be fighting for a medal.

"Four years later, Sochi: on a really good day, then maybe a top 10. It's a different set-up now and everyone on the team is faster than they were four years ago.

"We have new coaches, we're a lot more professional. "I've been on the [World Cup] podium already this year at the Tour de Ski, I'm healthy now, training is good, so now it should be a realistic goal to be right up there in PyeongChang."

The Winter Olympics take place from 9th to 25th February.

The BBC Sport has unveiled its Olympic trailer, themed "We are Fearess"  - see below:


Find out more about what's on and when:

So, what are the athletes up to ahead of the Games?

They are training and competing:

Izzy and Woodsy head to X-Games as packed calendar continues

Just when it seems like the action is winding down in preparation for PyeongChang, the busy winter sports calendar continues towards the end of the month.

The biggest event this week is the X-Games in Aspen, Colorado which starts on Thursday.

James Woods will be competing at the event for the sixth straight year while Izzy Atkin has been invited to her second event.

Alex Tilley and Dave Ryding both competed in alpine World Cups last Tuesday and the pre-Olympics season is not over yet with other events still to come.

Meanwhile Jasmin Taylor will be hoping to add to her impressive World Cup campaign when the telemark skiers take to their second competition in Vermont in the space of a week.

X-Games, Aspen USA - Thursday 25 to Sunday 28 January

The X-Games are an iconic event on the freeski and snowboard calendar and two GB Park and Pipe skiers will be in Aspen this week for the 2018 edition.

James Woods has been attending X-Games since 2013 and will this year be competing in both slopestyle and big air.

Woods broke through for his first X-Games win last year in big air, and his best slopestyle result is third (Aspen 2013 and Oslo 2017).

Izzy Atkin was a late call-up to the competition last year but has certainly earned her invitation in 2018 following an impressive 12 months.

Over the past year Atkin has scored two World Cup podiums including a victory at Silvaplana in March as well as bronze at the World Championships.

She enters the ski slopestyle event on the back of a pair of third-places in Snowmass at the World Cup and Grand Prix events.

FIS Telemark World Cup, Sugarbush Resort USA - Wednesday 24 to Friday 26 January

Jasmin Taylor has reached the World Cup podium seven times from eight races this year and has three more chances to add to that total later this week.

On the weekend, Taylor picked up her first ever World Cup win along with a second and a third at Suicide Six Resort, and now she is hoping for more glory 50 miles further north at Sugarbush Resort.

She will be competing in the ladies' Classic, Sprint and Parallel Sprint while Louis Hatchwell is in the men's events.

Unfortunately, Telemark is not an Olympic discipline.

See here for the main PlanetSKI news page with all the latest stories from the mountains.

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