USSA has announced the nominations for the 2010 US Cross-Country Ski Team. Seven athletes have been nominated – five to the A Team and two to the B Team.
Leading the way are Olympians Kikkan Randall, Kris Freeman and Andy Newell. Newell and Randall both finsihed on the World Cup podium this year, while Randall set a standard for US women when she finished 8th at the 2010 Olympics.
Newell also just missed the top-3 in the FIS Sprint Cup, placing 4th, and in the running for the podium until the last event.
They are joined on the A Team by Liz Stephen and Morgan Arritola, both of whom also raced at the Olympics. Stephen and Arritola spent 2010 on the World Cup for the first time.
Simi Hamilton, who finished 29th in the Olympic sprint, and Noah Hoffman are the only members of the B Team.
The Team continues to shrink, dropping from 18 members in 2009 to 11 in 2010 and now to 7. The most notable absence is Torin Koos, the three-time Olympian and nine-year veteran of the USST. Koss struggled through a tough year where he qualified for the World Cup sprint heats just once.
Also dropped from the Team – Lindsay Williams, Garrott Kuzzy, Morgan Smyth and Tazlina Mannix.