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US ski jumpers miss out on Olympic qualification




American women’s ski jumpers failed to qualify for the Beijing Winter Olympics, a notable absence for the nation that helped lead the fight to include women’s ski jumping in the Games.

The International Ski Federation on Monday released the final Olympic quota allocations, based on international competitions. The United States has not moved from its place outside the Olympic quota.

Anna Hoffmann, who won the US Olympic Trials over Christmas, can only enter the Olympic field if six places remain vacant among the nations that have qualified. It is very unlikely.

Obviously, that’s disappointing because we all want to be Olympians,” Hoffmann said earlier this winter on NPR. Were a developing and growing team, and were more focused on the depth of our team and the long term.

The Americans were at the heart of the early milestones of women’s ski jumping.

In 2008, Lindsey Van and Jessica Jerome were among 15 female ski jumpers to sue the Vancouver 2010 organizing committee for gender discrimination because women’s ski jumping was not on the Olympic programme. Men’s ski jumping has been on the program since the first Winter Games in 1924.

Although the Supreme Court of British Columbia said the IOC had discriminated against gender by excluding women’s ski jumping, it did not compel organizers to hold an event, stating that Canadian law had no no jurisdiction over the IOC.

In 2009, Van won the first women’s event in the history of the World Ski Jumping Championships.

After women’s ski jumping was added to the Olympic program at the 2014 Sochi Games, American Sarah Hendrickson became the first woman to perform competitive ski jumping in Olympic history.

Van and Jerome retired after their only Olympics in 2014. Hendrickson announced his retirement last March. An American ski jumper has not finished in the top 10 of an individual World Cup in nearly five years.

When I think about whether or not we send a woman to these Games [in Beijing], athletically, weren’t quite ready yet anyway, said Billy Demong, the 2010 Olympic Nordic combined champion who is now USA Nordic’s chief executive, according to NPR.

The Olympic competition will also go ahead without reigning Olympic gold medalist Maren Lundby. The Norwegian announced in October that she would not compete this season.

Ski jumping is a sport with a lot of demands, weight is one of them, Lundby said then, according to a translation from My body has changed naturally lately, and for this reason I don’t want to sacrifice everything to be at the best level in Beijing.

Austria’s Marita Kramer leads the World Cup standings this season.

After the addition of women’s ski jumping to the Olympics, Nordic combined remained the only sport at the Summer or Winter Games without female representation.

In December 2020, American Tara Geraghty-Moats won the first Women’s Nordic Combined World Cup. He made his world championship debut last February.

In 2018, a women’s event was denied a spot on the 2022 Winter Olympics programme, an IOC official cited the lack of Olympic-level athletes in several countries, but the inclusion of the World Cup and world championships could lead to a spot at the 2026 Winter Games in Italy.

The American men qualified two Olympic quota spots in ski jumping. Olympic Trials winner Kevin Bickner will fill one of them. It’s the first time the United States has failed to qualify for the men’s Olympic team ski jumping event, which was added in 1988.

NBC’s Olympic Research contributed to this report.

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