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2014 Sochi Winter Olympics Ski and Snowboard Cross Course

Technical improvements are making courses more and more exciting

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Photo credit: Skistar Trysil cc

2014 Sochi Ski and Snowboard Cross Course

After four years of grueling design work, the International Ski Federation (FIS) unveiled the much anticipated design of the ski and  snowboard cross course to be used in the 2014 Winter Olympics. The course design -- featuring jumps, rollers, a 210-meter drop and eight turn sections -- was released on November 21, 2013.

The Numbers

The ski and snowboard cross for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, was designed with diversity, challenge and excitement in mind. In fact, the course is so versatile that skiers and snowboarders share nearly an identical course with the same start and finish lines and 80 percent of the same features.

The course is 1250 meters of extreme competition with eight turn sections separated by massive jumps. Between all of the major features are small roller sections to add some serious difficulty. At one point, the course splits into two sections -- one for skiers and one for snowboarders -- to account for the different skill sets in the two sports.

The People Behind It

The very same course -- located at Rosa Khutor Extreme Park in Sochi, Russia -- was used in the FIS Freestyle World Cup and also the Snowboard World Cup in early 2013. The positive feedback the course received led to the decision to use the same design in the 2014 Olympics.

The course was created by a combination of ski and snowboard experts. FIS Technical Advisors David Ny and Nicolas Vaudroz joined Martin Fiala -- a German Olympian who competed in the Vancouver 2010 Olympic ski cross event -- as well as a number of other ski and snowboard experts to create one of the best snowboard cross courses in the history of the discipline.  

Putting It to Use

Snowboard cross made its debut as an Olympic discipline in the 2006 Winter Games in Turin, Italy and has since become a spectator favorite in the sport. When ski cross joined the roster in the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics, the discipline was no less exciting than its snowboarding counterpart.

The 2014 Course, located at Rosa Khutor Extreme Park in Sochi, Russia, was designed and meticulously built with the world’s best skiers and snowboarders in mind.

Previous Olympic Snowboard Cross Results

2006 Winter Olympics - Turin, Italy

Men’s

●    Gold - Seth Wescott (USA)

●    Silver - Radoslav Zidek (SVK)

●    Bronze - Paul-Henri de Le Rue (FRA)

Women’s

●    Gold - Tanja Frieden (SWI)

●    Silver - Lindsey Jacobellis (USA)

●    Bronze - Dominique Maltais (CAN)

2010 Winter Olympics - Vancouver, Canada

Men’s

●    Gold - Seth Wescott (USA)

●    Silver - Mike Robertson (CAN)

●    Bronze - Tony Ramoin (FRA) 

Women’s

●    Gold - Maelle Ricker (CAN)

●    Silver - Deborah Anthonioz (FRA)

●    Bronze - Olivia Nobs (SWI)

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