Locals start chase to Olympics in World Cup competitions | SteamboatToday.com

Locals start chase to Olympics in World Cup competitions

Niklas Malacinski, a 17-year-old Nordic combined National Team member from Steamboat Springs, made his World Cup debut in Val di Fiemme, Italy last year and had the best jump out of all Team USA members in the first individual event. He’s hoping to keep that up this year as he attempts to make his first Olympics.
Sandra Volk/Courtesy photo

The Olympic season has officially begun. Last weekend was one of the first competitions for many athletes, including American men’s Nordic combined skiers.

Ben Loomis earned a career-best finish at Ruka, Finland, in the first large hill event. He finished 26th in the second event and 30th in the last to cap off an extremely successful season opener.

Steamboat’s Taylor Fletcher finished 33rd and 28th in the two events he participated in.

Young Niklas Malacinski, also of Steamboat Springs, finished in two of the three events, earning 38th and 40th.

Jasper Good, also from Steamboat, took 44th in the one day he participated.

The women’s World Cup season commences Thursday, Dec. 2 in Lillehammer, Norway, and the men’s season continues there. Women ski jumpers also have a World Cup event in Lillehammer this weekend.

Steamboat snowboarder Mick Dierdorff finished sixth in his first snowboard cross race of the season, which happened to take place on the Olympic course in China. Nick Baumgartner finished third, the top American.

In para snowboarding action, STARS Program Outreach Coordinator Noah Elliott is chasing down his second trip to the Paralympic games. Elliott was in Landgraaf, Netherlands, earlier this week competing in banked slalom. Elliott finished third in both races among men in the lower limb impairment one category.

The Visa Big Air competition kicks off Thursday at Steamboat Resort and concludes Saturday.

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