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Big Air Skiing/Snowboarding Comes To Atlanta & More From Team USA This Weekend

By Paul D. Bowker | Dec. 20, 2019, 12:01 a.m. (ET)

As you settle into your weekend, Team USA athletes are getting ready to compete all around the world. Keep track of the biggest events and how to follow them on Team USA This Weekend.

Atlanta Ballpark Welcomes Big Air Skiing And Snowboarding

Nearly a million pounds of snow are awaiting 2018 Olympian Chris Corning and other world cup big air snowboarders and skiers this weekend in Atlanta.

SunTrust Park, home of baseball’s Atlanta Braves, is hosting a world cup big air competition Friday and Saturday. Preparing the venue for its first world cup meant making 800 tons of snow for the big air ramp in a city where snow is rare.

Corning, who missed the big air podium by just one spot at the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018, is off to a strong start. He has reached the podium in all three world cup stops this year following a 2018-19 season in which he won the big air snowboarding world cup crystal globe. He is coming off a third-place finish last week in Beijing at the big air venue that will be used for the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022.

Among those joining Corning in the snowboarding competition Friday are Olympic slopestyle gold medalist Red Gerard in the men’s competition and three-time Olympic medalist Jamie Anderson in the women’s competition.

Alex Hall, a 2018 Olympian and 2016 Youth Olympic Games silver medalist, is among the U.S. skiers entered in Saturday’s big air skiing event. Among the U.S. women is Caroline Claire, a 2018 Olympian.

TV: 7 p.m. ET Friday and Saturday, NBCSN; 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, NBC

Webcast: 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, NBC Sports App

Follow along on social: U.S. Ski & Snowboard Team on Twitter, Chris Corning on Instagram and Alex Hall on Instagram.

Halfpipe Snowboarding And Skiing Offers Olympic Preview

Twenty American halfpipe skiers and snowboarders are in China this week to get a preview of the venue that will be used for the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022.

Aaron Blunck, a two-time reigning world champion and two-time Olympian, leads a stacked U.S. lineup of 16 in halfpipe skiing. Blunck is coming off a victory in the U.S. Grand Prix last week at Copper Mountain, Colorado.

Among those joining him in the men’s competition are David Wise, a two-time Olympic gold medalist who finished second behind Blunck at Copper Mountain; Alex Ferreira, an Olympic silver medalist; and Birk Irving, a gold medalist at the 2016 Youth Olympic Games.

Devin Logan, a two-time Olympian, and Abigale Hansen are among those in the women’s competition.

Maddie Mastro, a 2018 Olympian who finished third last week at the U.S. Grand Prix, is in the women’s halfpipe snowboarding event. The men are led by Chase Blackwell, a rookie tour champion who made the final last week.

The halfpipe skiing finals are Saturday (late Friday, ET), followed by the snowboarding finals on Sunday.

TV: 10 p.m. ET Friday, 11 a.m. Sunday, Olympic Channel; 10 p.m. Saturday, NBCSN

Webcast: 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday, NBC Sports App

Follow along on social: Maddie Mastro on Twitter, Aaron Blunck on Instagram and David Wise on Instagram.

Sailor Caleb Paine Leads U.S. Into Finn Gold Cup

Caleb Paine, a 2016 Olympic bronze medalist who secured an Olympic quota spot for the U.S. in the Finn sailing class earlier this year in the European championships, is one of three U.S. sailors competing in this week’s Finn Gold Cup in Melbourne, Australia.

Paine is in 27th place after three days of fleet sailing.

Luke Muller, who won a national championship in the Laser class in 2013, is the top American, in 19th place. Eric Anderson was in 42nd place.

Fleet racing continues through Friday in the Gold Cup, which is the world championship for the Finn class. The medal race is Saturday.

Follow along on social: U.S. Sailing on Twitter, Finn Class on Twitter and Luke Muller on Instagram.

Men’s Alpine Skiers Take On Italian World Cups

The Val Gardena and Alta Badia ski areas in northern Italy are separated by about 10 miles.

And that’s where U.S. skiers will compete this weekend in separate world cup events for the speed racers and the tech racers.

Tommy Ford, a two-time Olympian who earned his first world cup giant slalom win two weeks ago at the Birds of Prey race in Colorado, and Ted Ligety, a two-time Olympic champion, will race in Sunday’s giant slalom in Alta Badia.

Ford is the world cup giant slalom points leader entering Sunday’s race. Ligety is in seventh.

Before the giant slalom takes place in Alta Badia, super-G and downhill races are scheduled for Friday and Saturday at Val Gardena.

Among the U.S. starters in the downhill are Ryan Cochran-Siegle, a 2018 Olympian who is 14th in the world cup downhill standings, and Steven Nyman, a four-time Olympian who is ranked 15th. Joining them are Bryce Bennett, Travis Ganong, Jared Goldberg, Wiley Maple, Sam Dupratt, Sam Morse and Tommy Biesemeyer.

TV: 5:30 a.m. ET Friday, 5:45 a.m. Saturday, 7 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Sunday, Olympic Channel

Webcast: 5:45 a.m. Friday, 5:45 a.m. Saturday, 4 and 7 a.m. Sunday, NBC Sports App

Follow along on social: FIS Alpine Skiing on Twitter, Tommy Ford on Instagram and Ted Ligety on Instagram.

Women’s Alpine Skiing – Val d’Isere World Cup
Alice Merryweather and Alice McKennis, who are both ranked among the top 15 in the world cup downhill standings, are expected to compete at this weekend’s tour stop in Val d’Isere, France. However, three-time Olympic medalist Mikaela Shiffrin, who is fourth in the downhill standings and tops in the overall standings, is taking this weekend off following a 17th-place finish in a giant slalom race Tuesday in Courchevel, France. A downhill is schedule for Saturday, while the action in Val d’Isere also includes an alpine combined event on Sunday before the tour takes a five-day break for Christmas.

TV: 4:15 a.m. ET Saturday, 8 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. Sunday, Olympic Channel; 7:30 p.m. Sunday, NBCSN

Webcast: 4:30 a.m. Saturday, 5 and 8 a.m. Sunday, NBC Sports App

Biathlon – Le Grand Bornand World Cup
Jake Brown, who had a sixth-place finish in a sprint race in the IBU Cup, was added to the U.S. men’s world cup team for this week’s competition in Le Grand Bornand, France. He’ll join two-time Olympian Sean Doherty, 2018 Olympian Leif Nordgren and Alex Howe on the men’s squad. Susan Dunklee, Joanne Reid, Clare Egan and Emily Dreissigacker, who combined to post the fourth consecutive top-10 relay finish for the U.S. women last week in Hochfilzen, Austria, will race on the women’s side. A women’s 7.5-kilometer sprint is scheduled for Friday, followed by women’s 10K and men’s 12.5K pursuit races Saturday, and women’s 12.5K and men’s 15K mass start races Sunday.

TV: 8:15 a.m. ET Friday, 7 and 9 a.m. Saturday, 9 and 10 a.m. Sunday, Olympic Channel; 5:30 p.m. Sunday, NBCSN

Webcast: 8:15 a.m. Friday, 7 and 9 a.m. Saturday, 6:10 and 8:15 a.m. Sunday, NBC Sports App

Cross-Country Skiing – Planica World Cup
Three-time Olympian Simi Hamilton and his wife, two-time Olympian Sophie Caldwell, are among a group of five Americans heading to Planica, Slovenia, this week for individual and team sprint freestyle races. Caldwell, who is No. 23 in the women’s world cup standings, will combine with Julia Kern in Sunday’s team sprint. Hamilton, 2018 Olympian Logan Hanneman and Kevin Bolger are in Saturday’s individual men’s race. Olympic champion Jessie Diggins is in third place in the women’s world cup standings, but she and other members of the national team are remaining in Davos, Switzerland, to train for the upcoming Tour de Ski.

TV: 11 a.m. ET Saturday, 5 a.m. Sunday, Olympic Channel

Webcast: 7:30 a.m. Saturday, 5:10 a.m. Sunday, NBC Sports App

Snowboardcross – Cervinia World Cup
Lindsey Jacobellis, a five-time world champion who finished fifth in last week’s world cup opener, leads 14 U.S. snowboarders in this week’s world cup stop in Cervinia, Italy. Jacobellis is seeking her 31st world cup snowboardcross win in Saturday’s competition. Joining her in the women’s races are Faye Gulini, Rosie Mancari, Livia Molodyh and Stacy Gaskill. Hagen Kearney, Jake Vedder and Nick Baumgartner finished 10th, 11th and 12th last week in Montafon, Austria, and are among nine U.S. men going after podium finishes in Cervinia. Qualifying is Friday, followed by the men’s and women’s finals Saturday.

TV: 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. ET Saturday, Olympic Channel

Webcast: 5 a.m. Saturday, NBC Sports App

Skicross – Innichen World Cup
Tyler Wallasch and Brant Crossan are racing in a pair of men’s skicross world cup races Saturday and Sunday in Innichen, Italy. Wallasch, who is ranked 25th in the world cup standings, had a season-best 14th-place finish two weeks ago in France. A 21st-place finish last week in Arosa, Switzerland, moved Crossan up to 30th place in the world cup standings.

Webcast: 7:30 a.m. ET Saturday, 7:30 a.m. Sunday, NBC Sports App

Ski Jumping – Engelberg World Cup
Kevin Bickner and Casey Larson, both 2018 Olympians, are in Engelberg, Switzerland, for a world cup stop in men’s ski jumping. Individual competitions are set for Saturday and Sunday. Bickner had a top-45 finish in Ruka, Finland, last month. Larson is competing in his first world cup competition of the season. The qualifying round is Friday.

TV: 8:30 p.m. ET Saturday, 8:30 p.m. Sunday, Olympic Channel

Webcast: 12 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. Saturday, 9 a.m. Sunday, NBC Sports App

Nordic Combined – Ramsau am Dachstein World Cup
Taylor Fletcher, a three-time Olympian, is the lone American competing in a Nordic combined world cup stop in Ramsau am Dachstein, Austria. Competitions combining a Gundersen normal hill HS98 jump and 10-kilometer races are set for Saturday and Sunday. Fletcher had a 38th-place finish two weeks ago in Lillehammer, Norway.

Webcast: 5 and 8:15 a.m. ET Saturday, 5 and 9:45 a.m. Sunday, NBC Sports App

Taekwondo – Grand Slam Champions Series
Madelynn Gorman-Shore, who won a bronze medal at the Pan American Games, competes Friday in the World Taekwondo Grand Slam Champions Series in Wuxi, China. She’ll go after a podium finish in the women’s 67+ kg. weight class. Cheyenne Lewis and Anastasija Zolotic competed earlier in the three-day tournament, which concludes Friday.

Paul D. Bowker has been writing about Olympic and Paralympic sports since 1996, when he was an assistant bureau chief in Atlanta. He is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.