Heading into the final weekend of World Cup racing, the U.S. Ski Team will be allotted a greater number of starts. Starting with Friday’s sprint, racing will be organized in Québec, Canada. Not technically the U.S., but it is North America. The International Ski Federation’s rules state that when Canada hosts a World Cup, the U.S. is considered part of the “nation’s group”.
In Québec, you’ll see some new U.S. faces on the World Cup roster.
The women will start 15 athletes, the men 12. (The selection criteria are listed below.) The women have three additional starters as a result of Sophie Caldwell, Sadie Bjornsen, and Jessie Diggins all being ranked in the top-20 World Cup sprint rankings after last weekend in Falun, Sweden. Simi Hamilton also falls into the top-20 sprint ranking benchmark. Those four skiers earned starts for themselves. In other words, another U.S. skier, for example, can not be substituted in for Diggins in the event she falls ill or otherwise cannot start.
Let’s run through the women first. The women have a normal World Cup start allocation of six athletes. The nation’s group allows for five more. Then we add Caldwell, Bjornsen, and Diggins, as well as the Continental Cup leader for a total of 15 starters. FasterSkier should note that U.S. Ski Team Head Coach Chris Grover wrote the following about selection criteria, “many athletes have qualified via multiple pathways, and generally, it is the pathway that first got them selected to the team that is listed.”
- Kaitlynn MIller (CGRP) SuperTour leader.
- Rosie Brennan 10th World Championship skiathlon.
- Ida Sargent 36th ranked overall in World Cup sprint.
- Alayna Sonnesyn 4th in SuperTour standings as of Feb. 17.
- Caitlin Patterson 5th in SuperTour standings as of Feb. 17.
- Hannah Halvorsen 6th in SuperTour standings as of Feb. 17.
- Becca Rorabaugh 7th in SuperTour standings as of Feb. 17.
- Julia Kern 12th U23 Worlds 10 k skate.
- Kendall Kramer 4th Junior Worlds 15 k classic.
- Hailey Swirbul 10th U23 Worlds 15 k classic.
- Rosie Frankowski 24th World Championship skiathlon.
- Katharine Ogden tied for 7th in SuperTour standings as of Feb. 17. Ogden was an alternate who was promoted to the team when Novie McCabe declined her start. McCabe placed 10th in the Junior Worlds 15 k classic.
- Jessie Diggins 7th World Cup sprint rankings post-Falun.
- Sadie Bjornsen 11th World Cup sprint rankings post-Falun.
- Sophie Caldwell 4th World Cup sprint rankings post-Falun.
The twelve men can be divided up as follows: The men are allowed five starters as part of the U.S. World Cup quota. Add the Continental Cup leader, the five spots for nation’s group, and Hamilton for a total of twelve male skiers.
- Kyle Bratrud SuperTour leader.
- Andy Newell 44th World Cup sprint.
- Erik Bjornsen 39th rank overall distance World Cup.
- David Norris 20th World Championship 50k skate.
- Ben Saxton 2nd in SuperTour standings as of Feb. 17.
- Peter Holmes 3rd in SuperTour standings as of Feb. 17.
- Ben Ogden 8th Junior Worlds classic sprint, 10th 30 k classic.
- Gus Schumacher 6th Junior Worlds 10 k skate, 4th 30 k classic.
- Kevin Bolger 18th World Championship skate sprint.
- Logan Hanneman 26th World Championship skate sprint.
- Scott Patterson 30th World Championship 15 k classic.
- Simi Hamilton top-20 World Cup sprint rankings post-Falun.
Below are the criteria used by U.S. Ski and Snowboard to determine the final roster for World Cup finals. (Link to SuperTour Points List)
“Individuals who meet the following criteria will be selected to the World Cup Cross Country Team for the World Cup Finals (March 22-24, 2019).
- Athletes ranking in the top-50 in the Distance World Cup standings and/or in the top-50 in the Sprint World Cup standings as of February 17, 2019 shall be selected to the team.
- The leaders of the Overall USSA SuperTour classification (man and woman) on February 17, 2019.
- Athletes ranked in the top-20 in the Sprint World Cup on March 16, 2019 are considered extra quota spots (specific to those athletes) by the FIS and shall be selected to the team.
- Athletes finishing in the top-30 in an individual event at the 2019 Seefeld World Championships shall be named to the Team.
- Athletes finishing in the top-12 in an individual event at the 2019 U23 World Championships shall be named to the Team.
- Athletes finishing in the top-10 in an individual event at the 2019 World Junior Championships shall be named to the Team.
- Should there be any remaining positions after the Objective and Discretionary selection has been applied, those positions will be filled by considering the athletes ranking highest on the 2018-2019 SuperTour World Cup Finals Qualification points lists, which is
comprised of an athletes’ best 11 of 14 SuperTour results between December 1, 2018 and February 17, 2019 (the selection period).”